By Mlondolozi Ndlovu
Bulawayo, November 29, 2016 – DUMISO Dabengwa’s Zimbabwe African People’s Union (Zapu) has been forced to dissolve its Bulawayo provincial executive for alleged poor performance compared to other party provinces.
Since the former home affairs minister and his colleagues broke away from Zanu PF to revive the old Zapu in 2009, the once a dominant force especially in Matabeleland provinces, has lost out to other opposition competitors such as the two MDC formations.
The party has also failed to win any of the 2014 by-elections in Bulawayo even when the MDCs have stayed out of the polls in protest over an uneven playing field.
In a statement, party’s spokesperson Iphuthile Maphosa said the former liberation movement took the decision to axe some of its provincial leadership executives in the province for “underperforming”.
“Zimbabwe African Peoples’ Union Bulawayo Province had its executive committee dissolved as of Sunday 27 November 2016,” he said.
“This comes as a result of a resolution of the National Executive Council meeting of Sunday 20 November 2016, after NEC realized that the province was underperforming when compared to other provinces in the Southern Region.”
Maphosa accused the axed leadership of failing to invent meaningful programs to stimulate more support in the province, a situation which he said had cost the party.
He said the party regarded Bulawayo a “strategic constituency”.
“It was noted, sadly, that the province of Bulawayo had no concrete programs in place and that had a knock on the party structures and its growth in Bulawayo, that is bearing in mind the strategic importance of Bulawayo to the party and the broader body politic,” he added.
Cosmas Mafu, a member of the party’s national executive will lead the party’s newly set up interim committee.
He will be assisted by party National Peoples Council members Siphiwe Bafana, Gibson Sikhosana, among other members.
Since its break away from Zanu PF in 2009, Zapu has failed to win significant votes especially in Matebeland a province which it regards as its stronghold.
In the 2013 elections, the party did not get any seats in the parliamentary and its Presidential candidate Dabengwa was a distant fourth.