Binga by-elections: Can Zanu PF break into this opposition bastion?

The Binga by-election is an important indicator of the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC)’s performance because the district is the opposition’s last line of defence against Zanu PF, Binga North Member of Parliament, Prince Dubeko Sibanda has said.

Since 2000, Binga has been a stronghold of the opposition, with only one Zanu PF councillor among the 25 members of the Binga Rural District Council.

CCC has fielded six candidates for the December 3, 2022 by-elections, the last before the national polls in 2023.

The Binga North MP said Zimbabwe was now at crossroads, as most people were hoping for change to sweep across the country next year.

“We stand at a time when we believe 2023 is the year that change has to occur. These are the last by-elections before the 2023 general elections and we believe 2023 is the watershed year. It is the year Zimbabwe becomes as democratic as other countries we so much cherish, such as South Africa, Kenya to some extent and Zambia that is coming up very well,” he said in a Twitter Spaces discussion hosted by its party members based in the Diaspora recently.

“We also cherish that Zimbabwe should be a nation in which people’s democratic will, will determine the leadership of that country, not the circus that we see here.”

Sibanda emphasised that the Binga by-election is a crucial barometer to measure the opposition’s preparedness before the national elections.

“So, these by-elections are an important measurement of how 2023 is going to be. I know that we will have opportunities as political parties to interact in and out of Parliament to discuss what nature of the environment we want to enter the 2023 elections under but this is an important by-election,” said the MP.

“We need to raise as much money as possible. Money indeed will play a role as we are endowed with a lot of cadres who are willing to do work on the ground at no payment at all but just to make sure that work is done. The commitment is there so some resources are necessary. For example, resources like T-shirts so that campaign teams are identifiable when they go on to the campaigns.”

According to the MP, it was crucial for the opposition to obtain those materials to capacitate its campaign teams.

“It is important that we get those resources to fund this last by-election for the six wards in Binga. Binga is the last defence line for the opposition in this country since 2000,” Sibanda said, noting that its competitor the ruling party had invested a lot of resources to campaign in Binga.

“It is no coincidence that Zanu PF has tried to invest everything they can do from government to private resources to make sure they try to snatch Binga from the opposition. Zanu PF believes that can give them momentum for 2023, now that is false hope and that should be brought to an end on December 3, 2022 by-election when we take those six wards to be yellow wards.”

The six CCC candidates are Wilson Siampolomba of Kariangwe Ward, Mathias Mudenda of Simatelele Ward, Kingson Mpofu of Kalungwizi Ward, Joseph Mweembe of Sikalenge Ward, Chrispen Munkuli of Lubimbi Ward and John Sikabotu representing Siachilaba ward.

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