Thaba Moyo’s loss part of democracy

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BULAWAYO mayor Thaba Moyo’s downfall during MDC-T’s primary elections on Saturday was yet another clear demonstration that voters have the power to show non-performing politicians the door.

Sothern Eye Editorial

Zimbabweans have become too accustomed to the imposition of candidates and the MDC-T must be hailed for giving the people of Nkulumane, where Moyo was a councillor for a long time, the right to decide their destiny.

Zanu PF, which has been in power since 1980, has over the years become notorious for imposing candidates from municipal to presidential elections.

If the outrage caused by the latest list of the party’s candidates approved by the politburo is anything to go by, then Zanu PF has not learnt anything from its troubled history.

The party had initially scheduled its primary elections for today, but moved them to Wednesday after it became apparent that potential candidates who were elbowed out under controversial circumstances would not take the matter lying down.

Demonstrations are being held at Zanu PF offices across the country and petitions are clogging President Robert Mugabe’s mail system as disqualified candidates seek his intervention.

The infighting is likely to intensify this week and even spill to the campaigns ahead of the harmonised elections.

It will appear Zanu PF has also not learnt anything from the 2008 debacle where Mugabe’s insistence to stand for another term despite widespread internal disgruntlement, saw him losing against Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai in the first round of the polls.

Some aspiring Zanu PF MPs openly decampaigned Mugabe in what was called the bhora musango/ibhola egangeni strategy.

That was the most categorical statement that people are tired of imposed candidates and that politicians must know when it is time to go.

We are happy to note that Moyo graciously conceded defeat and immediately pledged his support to the new MDC-T council candidate Rodney Donovan Jele. This is how it should be.

Moyo’s departure after five years as mayor will give the people of Bulawayo the opportunity to elect another candidate with the capacity to return the city to its former glory days.

Other political parties and MDC-T structures also have a lot to learn from the Nkulumane poll as their candidate selection processes reach a climax this week.