Despite having roots in the Midlands, opposition ZAPU has not fielded candidates in the province for next month’s by-elections.
Zimbabweans will on March 26 go for mini polls to fill in 28 parliamentary and over 100 local authority seats.
The Midlands province has five vacant parliamentary seats which are up for grabs namely: Gokwe Central, Kwekwe Central, Mberengwa South, Mbizo, and Mkoba.
Political parties which fielded parliamentary candidates are the ruling ZANU-PF, Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC), MDC-Alliance, United Zimbabwe Alliance (UZA), Federation of African State, and United Democratic Alliance.
ZAPU also did not field candidates Nkulumane (Bulawayo), Binga North (Matabeleland North.
The revolutionary party only managed to field only two National Assembly candidates in Tsholotsho South (Matabeleland North) and Pumula (Bulawayo) constituencies.
“Our failure to field candidates in other parts of the country was not by design or lack of candidates,” ZAPU spokesperson, Msongelwa Ndlovu, told CITE.
“We had candidates across the country but faced financial and logistical challenges during the days leading to the sitting of the nomination court. These challenges have been noted as important lessons for 2023 where we hope to field candidates in every corner of the country.”
He said their only two candidates (in Tsholotsho South and Pumula) managed to prepare adequately for the nomination court sitting.
“These by-elections came at an appropriate time to help open up the democratic space which was being restricted by the ZANU-PF government,” he said.
“Our people should take advantage and use this opportunity to exercise their democratic rights to vote.”