President Emmerson Mnangagwa Thursday issued an emphatic vow his Zanu PF party will take the MDC Alliance to the cleaners in by-elections slated for early next year, adding that the polls shall proceed despite opposition grumbles and boycott threats.
Mnangagwa was addressing an estimated 6 000 strong Zanu PF crowd which converged at Dulivhadzimo Stadium in Beitbridge to see him preside over the commissioning of 28 houses for civil servants.
The crowd comprised mostly villagers bussed from different parts of Matabeleland South province.
Said the Zanu PF leader, “We are going to have by-elections in 2022 and tinovasvasvanga (we will trounce them). In 2023, we will then have general elections tovarakasha (we will beat them).”
“The opposition has hinted that they will boycott the elections, but we will hold them all the same.”
Mnangagwa added, “They are afraid of getting into elections. We are not deterred; we will go ahead with elections and we will win. We will get all the seats.”
Nelson Chamisa’s MDC Alliance has hinted on the thought of boycotting the elections insisting on government first putting together the necessary electoral reforms to level the playing field.
Douglas Mwonzora’s MDC-T has also been widely reported to be opposed to the holding of elections amid claims the opposition faction feared decimation of a delicately held parliamentary representation if polls are held.
The holding of by-elections has been a source of persistent conflict between Zanu PF and the MDC Alliance which has dozens of its MPs and councillors recalled for refusal to align their loyalties with Mwonzora.
The US embassy in Harare, Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition, among some prominent institutions, have also called for the holding of the long delayed by-elections in the country.