Zimbabweans have responded in varying ways to the recently held Nyanga South and Bikita East By-elections which were both won by the ruling ZANU PF. The final results are as follows:
Bikita East Constituency Ward 31 by-election results from all the six polling stations –
- Zanu PF 1112
- MDC 410
- NCA 23
- Spoiled 16
- Total votes cast 1551
- ZANU PF – 397
- MDC -236
Some members of the public were shocked by the results saying that they do not reflect the sorry state of the economy and all other ills grounding Zimbabwe. One Twitter user, The Right One, said:
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Only sychophants morons will continue to celebrate poverty when it has come again; zanupf manipulate the naive to vote for them
Prominent Zimbabwean journalist and documentary filmmaker, Hopewell Chon’ono, believes the opposition MDC needs to put more effort as far as preparing elections is concerned. He said:
The opposition MDC must take full responsibility for these losses. ZANUPF took Nyanga Ward 26 previously held by MDC Bizel Mapeta (ZANUPF): 397 Vincent Bopoto (MDC): 236 ZANUPF retained Bikita Ward 31: Thomas Mataga (ZANUPF): 1112 Moses Maposa (MDC): 410 Peter Mavenga (NCA):23
A local publication, Zim Media Review, opined that the MDC needs to work towards making sure that the party is loved the way Chamisa is loved by supporters. Posting on Twitter, it said:
Chamisa as an individual seems more popular than his party. Trends showed that in 2018. Could be something they need to work on
Spot on @. It’s hard to understand why the senior leadership of the MDC-ALLIANCE is conspicuous by its absence in these key by-election campaigns. Very hard. Imagine @ not participating in crucial by-elections. The Lupane East by-election is beckoning!
Team MDC Masvingo has however accepted defeat in the elections. It said:
We have been defeated. ZANU PF 1112 MDC. 410 Cde Gore. But we are not Down we are determined to regain all our rural wards as we build the # Province it’s election got its lessons we are equipped to Go!!!
This puzzled a ZANU PF sympathiser, MMatigary, who observed that it was rare for the MDC to accept defeat. He said:
First time to see MDC accepting defeat in an election. I hope the person running this handle won’t be fired from the party!
A Herald reporter, Caeser Zvayi, mocked Job Sikhala for his “we will overthrow Mnangagwa’s government before 2023” remarks after ZANU PF won resoundingly in the same District Sikhala had campaigned for his party. Zvayi said:
Can someone show Job Sikhala this result, a government led by a party that is endorsed like this cannot be overthrown, it has more numbers. Be a responsible, mature opposition maybe, just maybe, you may fare better in the eyes of the people! @ @
Zvayi’s remarks did not auger well with Prof Jonathan Moyo who responded saying:
Fortunately Job Sikhala knows, as does everyone including you, that Bikita East is not Zimbabwe and Zimbabwe is not Bikita East!
In return, Zvayi responded said:
The same way you know Harare is NOT Zimbabwe & Zimbabwe IS not Harare!
Others claimed the elections were manipulated. One of them is Majaira Jairosi who said:
Besides that poverty robs people’s ability to think, one cannot blame the people for being bribed by sacks of cornmeal & having their temporarily clinics packed with medicines. This kind of electoral fraud for political gains, gives ZanuPF a sense of false hope & invincibility.
Jairosi’s remarks come after others have claimed that the directive by Health Minister, Dr Obadiah Moyo, to NatPharm to supply Lupane medical institutions with medicines ahead of the by-elections constituted vote buying.