Ministers booted out in primaries

HARARE - Several top officials, including ministers, have been booted out at Zanu (PF) primary elections, which have been characterized by chaos and serious friction underlining the desire by members for change from the old guard led by President Robert Mugabe.

Higher and Tertiary Education minister Stan Mudenge is among the group of top officials who lost out to lightweights in the primaries, whilst more than 20 others were saved from humiliation by being imposed from above.

Mudenge lost Masvingo North to Joseph Chademana, a headmaster. He joins education minister Aenias Chigwedere, Rugare Gumbo (agriculture) and deputy ministers, David Chapfika (agriculture), Rueben Marumahoko (foreign affairs) and Kenneth Mutiwekuziva (small and medium enterprises development) who have also been defeated at the primaries.

Three senior officials, science and technology minister Olivia Muchena, (Mutoko South), Mudzi West MP Aqualinah Katsande and Margaret Pote of Chiredzi North were saved from defeat by a decree that they were not to be contested in their constituencies.

The Gutu South constituency witnessed drama after the contest involving outgoing MP Shuvai Mahofa and Zimbabwe Football Association chief executive officer Henrietta Rushwaya failed to proceed under unclear circumstances. Reports indicate that a party official, Lovemore Matuke took away the papers before the process had been completed. Sources say this followed a discovery to rig the election on behalf of Mahofa.   

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