By Nunurai Jena | NewsDay |
The wife of a jailed MDC councillor romped to victory to retain the seat for the opposition party in a by-election, where Zanu PF supporters allegedly attacked voters in a bid to stop them from taking part in the poll.
Svorai Chiwara was declared the winner of the ward 2 by-election with 782 votes against 381 for Lloyd Nyambo of Zanu PF.
Michael Gore, Chiwara’s husband, is serving a four-year jail term for torching Zanu PF Kadoma offices during fuel riots in January despite his claim that he was out of town at a funeral when the incident occurred.
Violence erupted at Rimuka 1 School after suspected Zanu PF members tried to bar people from casting their votes.
One of the MDC members and Kadoma deputy mayor, Tendayi Kokera, was assaulted and he accused Zanu PF members and State security agents of trying to rig elections by preventing people from voting at a polling station in an area the opposition party had a huge following.
“I was beaten by Zanu PF youths with sjamboks. They were also wielding machetes. I reported the matter to the police. The security agents were involved, because I saw some of them in suspicious vehicles,” Kokera said.
Chiwara said she dedicated her victory to her husband who worked so hard in the ward.
“I want to dedicate this victory to my husband who was jailed following January protests,” she said.
But Nyambo said violence was caused by Gore, who was released on bail on Friday. He claimed Gore tried to campaign at a polling station.
“The violence you are talking about was caused by Gore who was released on Friday and he came to vote, thereby instigating violence at the polling station,” the losing Zanu PF candidate said.