MBARE – Suspected drug dealer, Simbarashe Chanachimwe’s bid to hold political office under the tag of Zanu PF could soon go up in smoke.
This comes after Zanu PF’s Commissariat Department was tasked to decide the suitability of Chanachimwe to hold public office following widespread complaints and questions over how a man with a colorful history of clashing with law enforcement agents, had risen to become Zanu PF Mbare Ward 3 council representative for the forthcoming national elections set for August this year.
Chanachimwe who currently faces allegations of possession of drugs at the Harare Magistrates Court, strangely passed the party’s ethic test before stunning opponents in Zanu PF primary elections in March.
He polled 1,885 votes, defeating Beaton Chipembere who was second with 388 votes, Innocent Maselo (321), Erasmus Fofo (205), Isaac Simon (28) and Tawanda Mhishi (13).
Zanu PF has, however, received an avalanche of complaints regarding the self-styled music promoters’ suitability with the party’s national chairman Oppah Muchinguri saying the matter had now been placed before the party’s commissariat who would soon make a determination.
“I acknowledge receipt of your letter in which you raised concerns in relation to the candidature of Cde Simbarashe Chanachimwe as Councillor for Ward 3, Mbare Constituency, Harare Province,” Muchinguri wrote in a letter to the party’s Mbare structures.
“I have since referred your grievances to the Commissariat Department which is mandated to handle such matters. However, my office has taken note of the issues raised in your letter.”
On May 15, Zanu PF Mbare officials issued a prohibition order against the suspected drug lord from holding any meetings and holding a position of the party until his disciplinary issues are resolved.
“After the primary elections he took the parties administration books and the district party offices keys from the Main Wings Secretary in an unorderly manner with the use of force and violence, in the process he also insulted the Secretary using words of no respect,” read a letter by the Zanu PF Mbare District.
“The issue was reported to the district coordinating committee. He then locked the district party office and kept the keys for himself. He also insulted and undermined the authority of the Districts Main wing Chairman CDE O. Madyembudzi.”
Zanu PF’s Mbare district also alerted that Chanachimwe’s “pending court case against related to drug dealing which is against the Presidents mantra of no to drugs” was further reason for Chanachimwe to step aside.
“CDE Chanachimwe is entitled to bring a lawyer of choice to his defense, on the following date May 31, 2023 at the Mbare 4 District party offices,” the letter further reads.
Efforts to get a comment from Chanachimwe did not yield a result at the time of going to print.
Meanwhile, Zanu PF officials in Mbare Ward 3 said having Chinachimwe as the party’s candidate for the coming elections is a smack in Mnangagwa’s face and the efforts he is making to rid the country of drug and substance abuse.
“He was convicted in 2021 for staging and funding an illegal gathering in Matapi at the heart of the Covid-19 pandemic together with DJ Fantan and music producer, Levels,” said a Mbare resident who declined to be named fearing reprisal.
“Just this year, Dammer’illicit hide out, Block 14 Matapi Flats was raided by the police in February recovering sachets of dagga and a plant of mbanje consequently he appeared at Harare Magistrates Court.
“We can’t have him as our ward representative because he is not morally upright. He promotes the use of drugs and many kids have perished because of him and many continue to fall.”
Zanu PF Mbare officials said they were baffled towards the non-committal by the authorities to sanction a re-run in Ward 3, suggesting that money may have changed hands.
“We are told that Chinachimwe paid a substantial amount to the party provincial leadership to silence them from conducting the re-run. If he can break the law willful then there’s nothing that can stop him from using money to buy his way into office through proceeds of his drug deals,” said an official who requested anonymity.