ZANU PF Youth Rewarded After Assaulting ZEC Staff Member
3 September 2023
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Disqualified ZANU PF Aspiring MP Returns Through Youth Quota System After Assault Incident

Kudakwashe Damson, a ZANU PF aspiring Member of Parliament (MP), who was previously disqualified for assaulting a Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) official, has made an unexpected comeback through the ruling party’s youth quota system. Damson, who had been eyeing the Epworth parliamentary seat, was disqualified from ZANU PF primary elections due to an assault incident involving a Zec official during a voter education campaign in Epworth earlier this year.

Kudakwashe Damson

Damson had faced charges of violating the Electoral Act after disrupting Zec proceedings and was granted bail following the incident. The incident took place near Kubatana Primary School in Epworth, where Zec officials were conducting voter education. Damson allegedly disrupted the program and assaulted Zec officials Alerta Madzivanyika and Mercy Mutendedzwa, while also tearing the Zec bib worn by Benard Gwishiri. Tendai Matauya managed to escape the assault by quickly removing her Zec bib.

Despite his disqualification from primary elections, Damson’s name surprisingly appeared in the Government Gazette Extraordinary as an elected Metropolitan Provincial Council member under the youth quota system. This move has sparked speculation about the party’s internal dynamics and its approach to rewarding members.

Notably, President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s son, David Kudakwashe, and Justice Minister Ziyambi Ziyambi’s son, Carl Mutsawashe, have also benefited from the youth quota system. Mnangagwa secured seven youth representatives in Parliament through his win in seven provinces. The political landscape in Zimbabwe continues to evolve with these developments, showcasing the intricate dynamics within ZANU PF.

Political analyst Rejoice Ngwenya highlighted that ZANU PF has a pattern of rewarding its members and suggested that there might be underlying political dynamics at play, similar to how “Banana republics” reward close allies and family members.

As ZANU PF employs the youth quota system to bring individuals back into the fold despite past controversies, the political landscape in Harare Metropolitan Province, which is dominated by the Citizen Coalitions for Change (CCC), remains dynamic and subject to ongoing shifts in representation and power.- Agencies/ZIANA