ZANU PF politburo member Sikhanyiso Ndlovu yesterday said he will not quit politics despite suffering an embarrassing defeat during the Zanu PF primary elections for Pelendaba/Mpopoma on Tuesday.
Report by Richard Muponde/Nduduzo Tshuma
Ndlovu, who has lost all the parliamentary elections he has contested since 2000, said he would rally all his efforts to campaign for the winning candidate, Joseph Tshuma, and President Robert Mugabe in the forthcoming polls.
“I don’t live or eat politics, but I am politics,” he said. “Some said I should remove the jacket I was wearing (Zanu PF), but I can’t do that because I am the jacket.
“I started politics in the 1950s and I participated in the war until independence. I cannot leave that today.”
Ndlovu, who sounded lively and not like someone who had just lost an election, boasted of what he had achieved since he first got involved in politics.
“I was the first secretary for elections in the Zapu electoral directorate which brought the first government,” he said.
“However, there were disturbances and Mugabe said let’s have unity. I was the background man in the formation of the first central committee and politburo of a united Zanu PF.
“I did a lot in education, setting up five universities in the country. So with all this you can’t ask me what I will do next.”
However, there are reports that Ndlovu could yet be rescued from political oblivion, with sources revealing that he might be placed into the proportional representation quota.
He will join a number of prominent Zanu PF members who fell by the wayside in the party’s primary elections.
Senior Zanu PF members who lost in the party’s primary elections will lose their seats in Parliament and government positions, but their status within the party will remain unchanged.
Agriculture minister Joseph Made, parliamentarians Munyaradzi Paul Mangwana and Larry Mavima, were some of the prominent party members who lost in the primary elections.
Bubi-Umguza senator Lot Mbambo also fell in the party’s internal polls.
Zanu PF secretary for administration Didymus Mutasa yesterday told Southern Eye that the bigwigs positions within the party would be determined by congress and not the primary elections.
“The positions of the senior party members will not be affected,” he said. “Far from it, their status as politburo and central committee members will only be affected at congress and not by the just-ended primary elections.”
In Matabeleland, most Zanu PF bigwigs sought safety in senatorial seats save for Ndlovu and Tshinga Dube.
While Ndlovu lost, Dube sailed through in the Makokoba constituency after Peter Baka Nyoni, who was initially challenging him, pulled out of the race.
Simon Khaya Moyo, Angeline Masuku, Eunice Sandi Moyo and Callistus Ndlovu are some of the senior party members who have been reserved for Senate.
Meanwhile, winners in the primary elections were yesterday reportedly busy submitting their applications to the nomination court.
Despite reports of alleged vote-buying and rigging, Zanu PF Bulawayo provincial spokesperson Michael Sikhosana said the elections in the province went well and the party was ready for national polls.
“The polls went very well. We were happy to see candidates hugging each other after the announcement of results, showing that they would work together in campaigning for the party towards elections,” he said.