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Mary Mliswa Chikoka has been voted Hurungwe Rural District Council (RDC) chairman

Staff Writer

Mary Mliswa Chikoka former Mashonaland West Provincial Affairs Minister, has been voted Hurungwe Rural District Council (RDC) chairman, despite having sneaked into the local authority courtesy of the newly-introduced women’s quota system.

During chamber elections held at Magunje Growth Point this Thursday, the ex-minister garnered 20 votes while Councillor Jani managed 13 votes.

She becomes defacto mayor after putting up a brave face to take an oath of office and loyalty as chairperson at the rural outpost.

The effervescent former government bureaucrat, who doubles as Zanu PF provincial chairman, was a victim of internecine fights that rocked Zanu PF primaries resulting in her losing her Hurungwe West constituency to little-known Chinjai Kambuzuma.

Mliswa-Chikoka will preside over the wildlife-rich district authority, where she enjoys cordial relations with its embattled chief executive officer, Luke Kalavina, who is facing five criminal counts involving fraud, money laundering and corruptly concealing personal interest in transactions charges.

The former minister returned from the diaspora to take up active politics and in 2018 surprised all and sundry when she won the right to represent Zanu PF to contest Hurungwe West parliamentary seat formerly held by her brother, Temba Mliswa, who previously also served as provincial chairman.

Following her victory, the youthful rookie politician, reportedly related to President Emmerson Mnangagwa, was shockingly appointed Provincial Affairs and Devolution Minister, a feat no other woman has achieved in the history of Mashonaland West politics.

After assuming dual roles as minister and party boss she, however, created a lot of enemies amid accusations she was taking instructions from her brother on how to manage Zanu PF internal issues culminating in a plot to dethrone her of all her positions.

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