Who’s to Blame For CCC Bulawayo Fiasco?
29 July 2023
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By Shelton Muchena and Desmond Nleya in London | Acussations and counter accusations have been traded over what went wrong in Bulawayo leading to the nullification of the CCC candidates on Thursday.

FACT: 12 CCC candidate nominations in Bulawayo were nullified. At least for now.

But who is to blame?

Accused number 1: CCC

Some sections of the public, including ZANU PF supporters and a small group of CCC, blame the party leadership of being disorganised while lamenting that their “ambiguity strategy ” have come to haunt them.

Some journalists and analysts also accuse CCC of plotting its downfall by not having structures and centralizing everything to Harare leading to the late submission of papers.

“…A tragic reality that could have been avoided if only the local leadership had been empowered to run things. This is the problem with centralising decisions and processes..

Nomination court was open on June 10, there was NO reason to file papers last minute”, said Hopewell Chin’ono, an international award winning journalist.

Logically, those celebrating and blaming CCC are ZANU PF supporters and sympathisers.

The party is blamed for being disorganised leading to submission of papers well after the 4pm cut off time as outlined by the law. Ironically, CCC’s lifeline now lies with the double candidates in some constituencies who submitted ‘on time’ BUT are not recognized by the party leadership.

CCC however maintains that they submitted ON TIME with the party President, Advocate Nelson Chamisa saying Bulawayo had two party officials who were responsible for the signatures.

“Facts: -Citizens in Bulawayo elected their representatives. -Our two signatories for Bulawayo candidates lists were local leaders in Bulawayo. Mlilo and S. Ncube’.

Is CCC to blame?

Accused number 2: ZANU PF

ZANU PF went to court seeking nullification of the nomination of the candidates involved. It was the complainant in the case and also a competitor, so it is safe to say ZANU PF is to blame by the simple fact that it doesn’t want CCC on the ballot box.

Bulawayo have been the opposition stronghold for almost two decades and it is common sense that ZANU PF was bound to try every trick to reverse that. They found a loophole and utilised it.

A simple statement from Kudzai Mutisi, a ZANU PF activist cements this assertion.

“ZANU PF is not a Charity Organisation, it is a political party… ZANU PF has no obligation to babysit opposition parties or to donate power to them… It’s intellectual laziness to expect ZANU PF to not use any legal means to win political power… Put your house in order, simple!”.

But Who alerted ZANU PF of the loophole?

Accused number 3: Prof Jonathan Moyo

The good Prof stand accused of being the chief culprit behind the court route taken by the complainant, ZANU PF.

It is in the public knowledge that after the 21 June nomination court day, the Prof raised a red flag on why ZEC officials accepted CCC candidates’papers after the 4 PM cut off time.


A group of activists followed and joined the fray accusing ZEC of bending laws to accommodate CCC.

As a result, ZANU PF ended up approaching the High Court seeking nullification of the nomination of the candidates involved on 29 June 2023, 8 days later after the nomination court.

Is Prof Moyo to blame for simply alerting the ‘public on the anomaly and interpretation of law’.? Did he actually order ZANU PF to take the legal route or he simply interpreted the law?

But how did Prof Moyo know that CCC submitted papers late?

Accused number 4: CITE

It is again in the public domain that on the nomination day CITE did a wonderful job covering the process.

And yet it now stands as one of the accused.


Because it simply, fairly and objectively reported on what actually transpired on the day including in some cases putting timelines.

“BulawayoNomCourt: Felix Mafa Magalela from CCC is trying to submit papers. The Provincial Elections Officer is telling him he missed the deadline and there will be no new submissions. This is a similar occurence for other CCC candidates as Eric Gono, Pashor Sibanda who were told to fix page 5 of their nomination forms. The PEO says, “ it’s those who come late that know their papers are in order. If not sure, you must come early”.

Such coverage has also been used to nail the media house of being an accomplice in the matter. But is it a FACT, can it be used as evidence in a court of law?

However, that being the case, if such reporting can be used to blame a professional media house like CITE for informing the public, logic is lost on impartiality and fairness.

But what is ZEC saying?

Accused number 5: ZEC

ZEC being the administrative institution of the elections fought in the corner of the CCC represented by its lawyer Tawanda Kanengoni.

These are facts by ZEC also being seconded by CCC:

1. ZEC said they received CCC forms ON TIME
2. CCC candidates say they submitted ON TIME
3. Zanu applicants say they HEARD the forms were late.

But are these “FACTS backed by evidence?

If yes, accused number 6.
The courts.

The High court ruled that 12 CCC candidates,ZEC and the other 6 serve for only one acted illegally hence the nomination was nullified.

While a signed affidavit by a police officer was produced as evidence that the applicants were on time, High Court Judge Bongani Ndlovu said;

1. Giving papers to a police officer was unlawful.

2. Candidate/agent must be inside court with his/her papers.

3. Papers in court without candidate/agent means nothing.

Again are these facts as said by the courts?

Justice Bongani Ndlovu presided over the case and made the ruling. Justice Nokuthula Moyo delivered the ruling.
While this might be within the confines of law, are we not missing something here.

Was Justice Ndlovu not brave enough to deliver the ruling?

Surely, who is to blame, is it CCC, ZANU PF, Prof Jonathan Moyo, CITE, ZEC, Judiciary or simply our emotions?

Prof Alexendar Rusero once said “_You will see how complex Zimbabwe politics is when for the first time ZEC and CCC are fighting in the same corner!_ Rusero (2023).