The Zanu-PF Norton primary election rigging saga involving national commissar Cde Saviour Kasukuwere took an ugly face yesterday after some yet to be named party members threatened Zanu-PF Harare provincial deputy chairman Cde Robert Kahanana for speaking to The Herald over the matter.
Cde Kahanana is believed to be one of the people speaking in the audio clip that exposed the dirty tricks used to impose Cde Ronald Chindendza as the Zanu-PF candidate in the Norton by-election held October 21.
In the clip, it is alleged that Cde Chindedza was imposed as the party candidate at the instigation of Cde Kasukuwere after he had polled only seven votes.
The results were then manipulated in the presence of the police and Cde Chindedza ended up with 257 votes.
Cde Kahanana yesterday confirmed receiving the threats, but refused to divulge details without first getting clearance from the party leadership. “Since morning, ndanzwa nemathreats nearticle yabuda munational paper,” he said.
Asked to reveal the nature of the threats and the people behind them, Cde Kahanana said: “Let me ask for clearance first from the party leadership.” His mobile phone later went unanswered.
Other candidates who contested in the primary elections told The Herald yesterday that it was now inconsequential to talk about the Norton poll because tit was now water under the bridge.
Cde Bybit Tsomondo, who came second after Cde Chindedza’s controversial victory, yesterday said: “I have no comment. I am a Central Committee member and I know how to channel complaints through the party hierarchy. If you really wanted to know about this matter, you should have contacted me soon after the elections. I don’t want to continue opening old wounds.
“Go and ask Cde (Charles) Tawengwa (Harare provincial chair) and Harare provincial commissar (Shadreck (Mashayamombe).”
Another candidate, Cde Mutendereki, declined to comment, saying: “It’s now up to the leadership because this issue is now before the national political commissar. We explained everything to him, so for us to be seen as candidates talking about the matter is a breach of party protocol .”
Last week President Mugabe lashed out at the party’s leadership for allowing Cde Chindedza to contest on a Zanu-PF ticket.
He described Cde Chindedza as a common thief who did not command much support in the constituency. Herald