Mliswa on grand coalition: I am better off alone

By Staff Reporter

Independent legislator for Norton constituency Temba Mliswa on Wednesday disclosed that his focus was on the Norton electorate who voted him into power after he triumphed into victory against Zanu-PF candidate Ronald Chindedza last year.

Addressing journalists during one of his regular media briefings in the capital, the Norton legislator suddenly made a u-turn after having made some remarks two weeks ago when he said he was still at pains to decide whether he should contest in Norton constituency or in the former Hurungwe West.

Mliswa said the people of Hurungwe West had pleaded with him to register as a candidate for the constituency ahead of the 2018 general elections.

“In terms of Hurungwe West and Norton that’s deep, I was there, a lot happened they still want me and miss me but I’m representing Norton right now and I want to focus on Norton, it’s quite humbling though that they still want me”, Mliswa said.

The former Zanu-PF provincial chairperson for Mashonaland West lost by more than a thousand votes margin against Keith Guzah in the by-elections that were held in 2015 following his expulsion from Zanu-PF. Guzah scored 5 961 votes against Mliswa’s 4 239.

Cases of violence and voter intimidation were reported before the elections forcing some villagers to seek refuge in the neighboring areas.

Though, cases of violence and vote-buying were reported in Norton Mliswa won against his former masters. Observers have linked Mliswa’s Norton to the current factional fights that left the party torn apart.

After Mliswa’s victory, President Robert Mugabe blamed Minister of Local Government Saviour Kasukuwere for imposing Chindedza whom he described as a well-known thief.

The opposition also made claims of having contributed to Mliswa’s victory but he rejected the claims.

Asked whether if he was going to join any coalition or political ahead of 2018, Mliswa said he was better off alone and was going to stand as an independent candidate.

Mliswa has on several occasions scoffed at the opposition’s effort to forge an alliance against Mugabe in the 2018 elections. Mliswa hinted that Morgan Tsvangirai should go alone in 2018 and shun uniting forces with Joice Mujuru whom he said her party had no representation in parliament.

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