Own Correspondent|Residents of Ward 28 in Bulawayo’s Cowdray Park have expressed disappointment at the opposition MDC for failing to settle on one candidate for the ward by election to be held on Saturday.
The party failed to settle a dispute between its two candidates Alderman Collet Ndhlovu and Nomagugu Mloyi who have apparently both been on a campaign trail canvassing for votes ahead of the weekend polls despite demands for one candidate by party members in the ward.
Ndhlovu and Mloyi both successfully submitted their papers to the nomination court on February 22 before the party could hold primary elections to come up with one candidate.
However, Mloyi declined to withdraw her candidature after she lost to Ndhlovu in the party`s primary elections.
“We are extremely disappointed with how the MDC operates,” said David Ncube a resident in the ward.
“We have been talking to them to provide us with one candidate and they have failed to do so which means that votes will be split and definitely ZANU PF will take the seat in the election,” he said.
The by-elections will be held to place a councillor following the death of MDC’s Hapson Ncube (pictured) in December last year.
In an interview with local media in the city earlier in the week, the party`s Bulawayo province deputy spokesperson Edwin Ndlovu confirmed that the opposition party was divided and campaigning for both candidates on the ground.
“Everything is on track. As we speak right now, we are on the ground. Campaigns are going on and we are certain the party will succeed in the elections,” said Ndlovu.
“On the issue of having two candidates, we will have to run the elections like that. It is up to an individual to withdraw after losing at primary level and in this case, Mloyi chose not to.
However, this will not affect the party in any way. We haven’t faced any challenges and neither do we anticipate any in the future.”
Contrary to the opposition party, ZANU PF have taken the by election seriously and last weekend deployed Vice President Kembo Mohadi into the ward to join the campaign for its candidate.
In an earlier interview, Mloyi who appears to be holding a higher backing from party members on the ground said she did not receive any instruction from the party to step down hence would continue with her campaign.
“I wrote a letter to Zvidzai after the primary elections to register my dissatisfaction in the way the primary elections were run and he responded noting that they received the letter,” she said.
“The election was not free and fair, there were lots of irregularities, my campaign team was displaced during the day of the election and we were supposed to use the ZEC voters roll as well as the 2014 congress party structures but that was changed at the last minutes.”