Race for mayor hots up

MDC-T Bulawayo province has reportedly resisted a directive from its national executive to impose outgoing speaker of House of Assembly, Lovemore Moyo, as the city’s mayor, as the list of people interested in the post continues to grow.

REPORT BY NDUDUZO TSHUMA

Moyo, who lost his Matobo North seat to Zanu PF in the recent elections, is reportedly being backed by MDC-T deputy president Thokozani Khupe.

“The national executive and Khuphe last week tossed the idea of selecting Moyo as Bulawayo mayor, but the Bulawayo provincial structure resisted the move,” a party insider revealed.

“They want to force us to revive his political career after losing in the elections, but that is not going to happen, besides, Moyo comes from Matabeleland South so they should find him something there.”

MDC-T won all 29 seats in the Bulawayo council elections and whoever a party caucus chooses to be the mayor, is guaranteed to clinch the city’s top
post.
The party’s provincial spokesperson, Mandla Sibanda declined to comment on the matter, saying they were waiting for direction from the MDC-T’s national executive.

“We have not heard anything about that, I cannot comment on that for now,” he said. “The national leadership will guide us on which person we shall select as the candidate.”

No comment could be obtained from either Khupe or Moyo.

Initially, prominent Bulawayo lawyer Kucaca Phulu was the front runner in the race to be Bulawayo’s first resident, while National University of Science and Technology lecturer Mandla Nyathi had also indicated interest in the post.

However, party insiders said there were fresh moves to push Moyo as the mayoral candidate.

“Phulu is an automatic favourite,” the source said.

“He has worked so much for the party, but some senior leaders want to push him aside and put Moyo instead.

“It is not fair, imposition of people will not do the party any good, but cause further divisions.”

Bulawayo businessman and incoming councillor Gift Banda has also expressed interest in the mayoral post, while a survivor from the previous council, Ben Rafemoyo, is also eyeing the post.

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