Zanu-PF Member of Parliament for Buhera South, Joseph Chinotimba is having sleepless nights over a plot by the party’s youths to unseat him. Chinotimba is not the only one being challenged. Chinotimba’s neighbours, William Mutomba (Buhera North) and Saul Nzuma (Buhera West) will also face strong challenge in the Zanu-PF 2023 primary elections.
Buhera has seen the emergence of a young crop of politicians across all the three constituencies targeting parliamentary seats held by the party’s old guard. This has unsettled the old guard, hence the emotional attacks,” said a provincial member who refused to be named.
Chinotimba was the first to be hauled over the coals by the party’s youth following a video of him accusing President Emmerson Mnangagwa of sponsoring a young candidate Ngonidzashe Mudekunye to take over his constituency.
On Monday, Chinotimba reportedly lost his temper at the ruling party’s Manicaland provincial co-ordination committee meeting in Mutare and took aim at some ruling party bigwigs, accusing them of plotting his ouster.
Chinotimba has been linked to the G40 cabal after former Information minister Jonathan Moyo took to Twitter, saying Mnangagwa wanted to impose Mudekunye in Buhera South.
In 2018, there was a push for Chinotimba’s removal by G40 members now in self-imposed exile
Chinotimba was fuming at the Manicaland PCC meeting in Mutare, saying he was aware of party bigwigs who were plotting against him,” one source claimed.
“He told the gathering that people should channel resources to Dangamvura/Chikanga constituency where Esau Mpufumi lost in the (March 26) by-elections and Makoni Central where Patrick Chinamasa lost in the 2018 elections,” the source added.
Meanwhile, Mutomba is reportedly facing a challenge from Phillip Guyo who transferred to Manicaland province from Harare. Guyo lost to the opposition in Chitungwiza in the 2018 elections before transferring to Manicaland.
Mutomba, who is being accused of being an absentee MP, has been Buhera North legislator for more than a decade. In Buhera West, incumbent legislator Nzuma is also having sleepless nights over Maxwell Chikwangwani who is eyeing the seat.
“This is where the confusion is coming from. The likes of Chinotimba never thought they would be challenged hence the panic. It is a pity that in his utterances, mentioning President Mnangagwa, he is doing nothing good, but fuelling factionalism,” another provincial member said.
In a letter dated May 16, addressed to the newly-appointed deputy secretary for youth affairs John Paradza, a Zanu-PF youth-affiliated group Zimbabwe Revolutionary and Patriotic Youth Network said Chinotimba should be summoned and clarify his rants.
Zanu-PF spokesperson Christopher Mutsvangwa yesterday rubbished claims of factionalism, while defending Chinotimba saying he was a hard worker. Comrade Chinotimba is a hard worker and has a sound or solid relationship with the President. We are not worried about people who are against him,” he said.