BULAWAYO, Zimbabwe – Thokozani Khupe, the former Deputy Prime Minister, is reportedly set to contest the Cowdray Park National Assembly seat on a Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) ticket in the upcoming elections. Finance and Economic Development Minister Mthuli Ncube will represent the ruling ZANU PF party in the same constituency after he sailed through uncontested during the party’s primary elections.
According to The Sunday News, CCC’s candidate selection process took place countrywide, and nominees will fight it out in internal elections to determine the official candidates. In Bulawayo, Khupe is among the nominees, along with Sindiso Mazibisa, who will compete against incumbent MP Anele Ndebele and political activist Promise Mkhwananzi in Magwegwe. Meanwhile, Gift “Ostallos” Siziba has been nominated for the Pelandaba-Tshabalala constituency, and Alderman James Sithole will face businessman Francis Mangwendeza in Makokoba.
CCC spokesperson Fadzayi Mahere told reporters that the nomination process was only the first stage. Candidates will need to go through a vetting process and community consensus building before becoming eligible to run.
“Following the nomination [process], there is going to be a vetting process, and the fact that one has been nominated is not the end of the situation,” Mahere said. “There will also be a process of community consensus building where citizens will come together and be told there is X, there is Y candidate, who do you prefer and why.”
Moreover, David Coltart is reportedly set to contest Councillor Tawanda Ruzive in Ward Five, amid indications that CCC is pushing for Coltart to be the next city’s mayor. The majority of the Bulawayo councillors, who have previously denied allegiance to Douglas Mwonzora, were reportedly nominated in the process.
CCC’s so-called Change Champion in Chief Nelson Chamisa was unanimously nominated to stand as the opposition party’s presidential candidate in the 2023 elections, according to reports. Chamisa is the founding leader of the party, and his allies have described him as the party’s “best foot” to challenge ZANU PF leader, President Emmerson Mnangagwa, for the second time after narrowly losing the race in 2018.
The CCC’s internal elections to determine official candidates are expected to take place on a date yet to be advised.