By Bulawayo Correspondent
ZAPU president and late Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo’s son Sibangalizwe has foiled Zanu PF’s plan to hold an all-night gala in commemoration of the late vice president at his rural Kezi home in Matabeleland South.
Nkomo died on July 1, 1999 at the age of 82 after a long battle with prostate cancer and was buried at the National Heroes Acre.
Addressing party supporters during the party ‘s star rally held at Stanley Square in Bulawayo Saturday, Sibangalizwe accused Zanu PF of using his father’s name to campaign for the ruling the party ahead of the August 23 elections.
“Zanu PF wanted to hold a pungwe (all-night) gala at the late vice president Nkomo’s homestead at St Joseph in Maphisa. I stopped that nonsense because in our culture holding such events during the night is tantamount to witchcraft. In the past, we have also seen used condoms, empty containers of the illicit and lethal njengu scattered all over after such events,” said the ZAPU president.
Sibangalizwe told the supporters that the party had agreed not to field a presidential candidate in order to channel more resources to the parliamentary candidates.
“As a party, we saw it unwise to pay US$20 000 for a single presidential candidate while our candidates could not afford US$1000 required for the aspiring MPs. So we paid that money for our MPs and we have fielded candidates in Matabeleland and Midlands provinces,” he said.
The ZAPU president urged his supporters to use their discretions to vote for a presidential candidate who is not corrupt and violent.
“On MPs and councillors, please vote for our candidates but for the presidential candidate use your discretion to vote for a candidate who is not a thief and murderer. We also do not want our youths to be given drugs and engage in violence,” pleaded Nkomo.
He also urged the party’s polling agents to jealously guard the ballot boxes.
“You should the ballot boxes as if you are guarding a corpse. We appeal and request our agents to be bear with us because right now we do not have money to pay them but whenever the money is available we will pay them. Right now what is important is our future,” added Nkomo.
Scores of party supporters and candidates from across the country attended the rally.