By Titos Makondo
“WE are done with elections, now then it’s time to move forward. I need your ideas, businesses and investors to build our constituency,” says Chiredzi South ZANU PF Member of Parliament Joel Sithole.
Sithole, who overpolled Dr Douglas Gumbo of Citizen Coalation for Change (CCC) in the harmonised elections held on 23 August, has taken to social media to mark a road map to the betterment of Chiredzi South.
This year’s elections have altered the constituency’s face. Of Chiredzi South’s eight wards, ZANU PF got seven, lost one to CCC. This had never happened before in Chiredzi South, a zone and kingpin of ZANU PF.
However, Sithole promised to work hand in glove with CCC ward 6 councillor Hapius Chikhutu, the first opposition challenger to win elections at ward level.
Directing his utterances to Chikhutu who subjugated Rodgers Mashoro of ZANU PF, Sithole said, “the CCC councillor of ward 6 must feel free to engage with me because l am representing the entire constituency.”
He said he will hold a first meeting with all winning councillors of Chiredzi South on the 2nd of September in Chikombedzi at Council offices, to map out the way forward for the development of the constituency.
Sithole promised to spark outgrowth in the constituency. Among the developments he promised to accomplish in five years time include: (1) to empower youth through agribusiness, (2) to establish judiciary offices and a bank, (3) to build Chilonga and Bubi bridge.
When asked to colour on the building of Chilonga/ Lunde bridge, said, “I suggest to start with repairing the Chipinda bridge for temporary use whilst pushing plans for the construction of a long term bridge at Chilonga.”
“In the South, Bubi bridge which links Chiredzi South and Beitbridge must also be repaired promote trade”, said Sithole, a business guru who has more than twenty shops across Chiredzi South.
In a remark which seem to have a ring of truth to it, former Chiredzi South MP Calisto Gwanetsa said it’s inadvisable to patch a bridge given that one is unsure of the cause of its collapse, adding that Sithole must find out what is in process before taking action.
“Chipinda bridge is unsafe and insecure. It fell in less than thirty years as it was a haste project conducted under poor workmanship,” he said.
Sithole who overthrew Hon Gwanetsa in recent ZANU PF primary elections said, “l don’t have bad blood with Hon Gwanetsa, he is my leader and my mentor l owe to milk leadership skills from him.”
He ended mentioning that he will be executing his obligations as a legislator in the name of teamwork, with councilors, local chiefs and political leaders.
Chikhutu, an odd councillor among the seven, is yet to say something.