The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission has failed to meet its legal and constitutional obligation to provide election materials timely with reference to the voters roll and as such it owes the people of Zimbabwe an apology rather than a mouthful of arrogance by suggesting that if they are any anomalies in the voters roll we should stomach it and raise any complaints after the election and that only an earthquake will stop the election.
I respectfully disagree with the judge because in my layman’s view the law says the opposite. In Makamure vs Mutongwi 1998(2) ZLR 154 at 169, Devittie J, as he then was, referring to remedies occasioned by a defective voters roll said, “Irregularities complained of could and ought to have been raised in the pre-election period. A postponement of the election could have been sought a party does not have to wait until the entire electoral process is completed.”
In the circumstances the ZEC Chair’s comments are a cause for concern. Our election must be conducted in terms of the constitution and as such must be grounded on the principles of freeness, fairness and transparency as outlined in the constitution.
With all due respect to the Chairperson of ZEC, Justice Chigumba, these utterances are not expected from a Public officer whose task amongst others is to instill confidence in an electoral process by assuring the nation that preparations for the plebiscite are being done with due care and transparently.
Zec has known for five years after the last election that it needed to prepare a new roll, allow people to inspect a provisional roll and raise any objections in it at inspection stage and then provide a roll before the proclamation of the election date and most importantly before the sitting of the nomination court.
As the representative of a Presidential candidate I was entitled to receive the National voters roll before the nomination court. To-date we do not have that roll which they said will be availed on Thursday. This is unacceptable. On Thursday I expect to receive a biometric voters roll because that’s what the law demands in addition to receiving the roll in any form I choose including electronic.
The credibility of any election amongst other things depends on the existence and availability to all players of a credible voter’s roll that is distributed timely. If there are any anomalies in the roll they must be corrected before the election.
We do recognize and respect ZEC’s role as a referee in this election but it is important that ZEC understands that other than an earthquake, the players on July 30 can stop the election by refusing to participate in a sham.
In addition, outside an earthquake, and the players, the people of Zimbabwe who are tired of these shenanigans can refuse to participate in the said sham election that would have failed to meet the test outlined in our constitution and the enabling electoral act and ZEC regulations irrespective of what ZEC says.
ZEC’s efforts must therefore be directed at assuring the public that it is doing all it can to conduct a free, fair and credible election and be seen to be doing so. That’s their duty period.
Chief Election Agent for President Nelson Chamisa
The MDC Alliance today launched its much anticipated policy blueprint that outlines its agenda. The event took place in Harare and was graced by all principals of the Alliance. The document which has been lauded as comprehensive provide specifics on issues that have bedevilled Zimbabwe including Land Tenure, Economy and Human Rights.
THE CHIEF ELECTORAL OFFICER
ZIMBABWE ELECTORAL COMMISSION
The Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs
RE: MINIMUM DEMANDS FOR CONDITIONS FOR FREE, FAIR AND CREDIBLE ELECTIONS
We, the undersigned, being members of the MDC Alliance- a grouping of political Parties intending to participate in the 2018 Harmonised Elections- under the leadership of Advocate Nelson Chamisa, and the people of Zimbabwe, hereby present this petition on our redline demands for a free fair legitimate and credible election.
On the 30th of May 2018, President Emmerson Mnangagwa proclaimed the 30th of July 2018 as the date on which elections for the office of President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, Members of Parliament of Zimbabwe, Senators and councillors will be conducted (‘harmonised elections’).
1. It is not the intent of this petition to exhaustively deal with the legal framework governing elections in Zimbabwe. It suffices, for present purposes, to state that the contemplated elections will be conducted under the 2013 Zimbabwe Constitution, the Electoral Act, and Chapter 2:13, as amended, as well as the SADC Principles and Guidelines Governing Democratic Elections.
2. We contend that it is obligatory for this election to be held in full compliance of the Zimbabwean Constitution, the Electoral Act Chapter 2:13, the SADC principles and guidelines guiding democratic elections and the African Union Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance (ACDEG).
3. We have made our demands for a free fair and credible election known in our document published in March 2018 known as PEACE
Despite these demands, despite the law, despite verbal commitments to a free, fair and credible election, it is self-evident that the Zimbabweans authorities and the ZEC lack the desire, ability and political will of conducting a free, fair credible election.
It is in this context that we are exercising our peaceful right defined in section 59 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe by marching and presenting this petition on the following demands;
i) All parties, and candidates (and or their representatives) participating in the election, forthwith be furnished with an electronic copy of the provisional voters’ roll as is required by section 21 of the Electoral act Chapter 2:13.
ii) That ZEC, allows an inspection period of the voters’ roll pursuant to fresh registration during the voter inspection period 19 May to 29 May 2018.
iii) That an independent, external audit of the voters’ roll be commenced immediately after the inspection period mentioned above, with the auditors to be agreed by all stakeholders and shareholders.
iv) That there be full and proper agreement by all stakeholders on the procurement, security, quality and movement of all ballot material, in particular, the ballot paper.
v) That the ZEC immediately retires in its secretariat, any security personnel whether currently employed or formerly employed by the security services as defined in Chapter 11 of the Constitution.
vi) That ZEC immediately disbands the present national logistics committee and that there is agreement in the composition, recruitment, training and deployment of the new members of the national logistics committee.
vii) That the current accreditation committee be disbanded and that there is agreement on the recruitment, training and deployment of the new members of the accreditation committee.
viii) That there be full disclosure with regards to the custody and location of the BVR Servers and that all stakeholders be allowed access to validate the legitimacy of the data in those servers.
ix) That the additional 1500 newly created polling stations be and are hereby abandoned and that there be discussion and agreement on additional polling stations if need requires.
x) That all military personal currently deployed in the rural areas be and are hereby recalled and that there should be full and complete de-militarisation of the rural areas.
xi) That all international observers and monitors should now be allowed immediate access to Zimbabwe to monitor the election pursuant to the proclamation of the election on the 30th of May 2018.
xii) That forthwith, there must be equal access to and equal coverage of all political parties in the public media, in particular the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation.
xiii) That there be a provision in terms section 67 of the Constitution to allow the Diaspora to vote even if it means voting only in the presidential election.
xiv) That there be cessation of the use of food and inputs as political weapons in this election
4. The holding of the 30th of July election is dependent on the conditions set out above
MDC Alliance Juggernaut Roars Into Matabeleland South
The people’s leader and MDC Alliance presidential candidate Adv. Nelson Chamisa heads for Matabaleland South tomorrow where he is set to address four rallies in three days.
Today, the people’s President will address two huge rallies; one at Maphisa business centre in Matobo and the other at Mawabeni business centre in Umzingwane.
On Friday, he heads for Pelandaba stadium in Gwanda and then concludes his Mat. South juggernaut at Dulibadzimu stadium in Beitbridge on Saturday.
The popular presidential candidate is prioritising rural areas in his campaign, where the majority of the people live. In the second leg of his campaign, he will move to mining towns and urban areas.
His campaign message, anchored on the tripod pillars of transformation, opportunities and prosperity, has enthralled the nation.
President Chamisa has promised a massive transformation of the rural areas and a positive upliftment of the people through a novel and innovative programme dubbed DURA, an acronym for Development and Urbanisation of Rural Areas.
The nation remains enchanted by the youthful and dynamic presidential candidate at a time the inept current leadership has run out of ideas to solve the myriad challenges facing the nation.
Behold the new.
Brace for change that delivers.
Presidential spokesperson and Director of Communications
MDC President Nelson Chamisa Condemns Unruly Behaviour
An incident involving a group of people accosting and shouting obscenities at our former colleague and Vice President, Thokozani Khupe has been brought to my attention.
I’m also aware that there is an impression that this incident was authored by the party. This is incorrect. I wish to state in very clear terms that whoever these people are, they do not represent me or the party.
The behaviour displayed in that video (in circulation on social media) is deplorable, wrong and is inconsistent with the values that we stand for as a democratic party. It has nothing to do with us and we condemn it in the strongest terms.
No one, not even a political competitor, should be subjected to that kind of disrespectful behaviour. As a party we have championed peaceful and non-violent, democratic change. That is our supreme guiding principle. We are committed to pursue this course and we will not allow or condone any behaviour which derails our mission.
We disassociate ourselves from this incident and where any of our members are identified as part of it, they have not acted with authorisation and disciplinary procedures will be activated.
We want a strong and prosperous Zimbabwe, one in which there is peace, tolerance and progress. We continue to urge Zimbabweans to participate peacefully in the election.
Finally, as I always do, let me urge those who have not yet registered to please take the current opportunity to do so.
Hon. Adv. Nelson Chamisa
President – Movement for Democratic Change
MEET THE CANDIDATE: Councilor Wabantu Denford Ngadziore
By Denford Ngadziore MDC T Harare Province Youth Secretary also aspiring Councilor for ward 16.
On Sunday the 6th of May Harare West District held its MEET THE CANDIDATE meeting which was a huge success despite the negative efforts of sabotage prior to the meeting. The meeting recorded the highest turnout for a District Meeting in the last 10 years indicating the ever-growing popularity of our Great Party, led by Advocate Nelson Chamisa. This indeed was a foreshadowing of our imminent victory in the upcoming elections.
Special thanks to all the party members who attended the meeting in numbers. The senior Party leadership led by senator Morgan Femai, Leader Viginia Muradzikwa, Leader Paul Madzore, Leader Freaman Gahadzikwa, Leader Womberai Nhende, Leader Mai Jaja,Leader Alexander ,Leader Muza,leader Nathan Chimombe not forgetting my two sisters Diana Nykadzino and Takudzwa Dzumbunu. Your wisdom will continue to guide me as I prepare for the biggest task ahead of Primary elections .
However more work needs to be done during the continuing Voter Registration Exercise and also the upcoming Inspection of the Voters Roll. Together it is possible to reach a total of over 20 000 voters in Ward 16 after inspection only if we all work together like what we did during voter registration blits.
It shall be the duty of every member of MDC in WARD 16 to remain united and focused on the main goal of ensuring that Our MDC Alliance Presidential Candidate Adv. Nelson Chamisa wins this year’s elections and lead us into a New and Prosperous Zimbabwe.
I want to asure you that I will work tirelessly to protect the residents’intrests and for the Ward in general.
Let us all work hard during inspection of the voters roll, and follow up on the success that we achieved during Voter registration where we registered nearly 70% of total Harare West registrants.
A big THANK YOU goes to the residents of Madokero, Maranatha, Sanganai Inn, Westlea,Paraplegic centre, Matidoda,Ashdon Park, Meyrick Park, Mabelreign, Greencroft, Sunridge and Zambezi flats and other Sarbubs for your unwavering and continued support.
Over the weekend am LAUNCHING MY MANFESTO before residents and other stalkholders within Our beloved Comunity.
Chamisa The “Poor” 18 Year Old Girl and Zanu PF Propaganda Gone Wrong
by Grace Kwinjeh | The point that should be understood from the onset is that for months now, Advocate Nelson Chamisa’s opponents have made it their duty to watch his every move fault find to humiliate him.
All the noise has nothing to do with love for the 18 year old girl child.
The President’s opponents have failed to come up with alternative ideas and campaign strategies that wow change loving Zimbabweans who see through every deception by Zanu PF having endured 38 years of suffering in the hands of a vile selfish ruling elite.
President Chamisa’s enemies want to cow him into silence, let that be understood from the onset, they will not stop, what is needed now is a vigilant and alert voter to read through the deception. So even if Chamisa reads the bible at a rally the fault finders will find fault and we must not let them divert us at this crucial stage of our struggle standing in the dawn of a new era that ends our slavery.
So selfish even as I write hospitals are closing down, teachers live like paupers yet millions of USD’s are being used on foreign trips, on mega billboard campaigns that bring no added value to the quality of the candidate.
All this noise has nothing to do with the poor girl child.
It is a well orchestrated plan by people standing on roof tops to scream about girl child rights and feminist narratives, protecting a girl who has otherwise suffered more shame and humiliation from the very system some sources of these attacks protect.
The girl child has no future under the government of President Emmerson Mnangagwa; where she is dis-empowered pushed into prostitution at the tender age of 13, with many roaming the streets vending to make a living. I will not talk about sanitary ware or her right to education and proper health.
Lovers of the girl child conveniently turn a blind eye when our powerful politicians use their influence to grab her from the cradle and satisfy their sexual pleasures.
I posit here that President Chamisa’s statement has not only been ridiculously taken out of context, except for one or two genuine critics the rest must just sit down and shut up.
We have over the past months seen attempts to humiliate and denigrate our President, from the same crew of hired thugs scoffing at his ‘bullet train’ policy proposal, to other open lies I will not dignify by putting details.
So much is the anger over the current UK visit, President Chamisa and Honouble Tendai Biti and David Coltart, that we are told again in another nonsensical diatribe that the Diaspora does not vote those thousands who attended the Sunday rally are of no value to Zimbabwean politics.
Again one shakes their head in disbelief at such buffoonery. The Diaspora alone in the last 3 years as stated by President Chamisa contributed in remittances an average of $1 billionover the past three years.
An important contribution as the remittances are important as they have a potential to improve our nostro account balances, finance infrastructure projects locally and guarantee foreign borrowings or financial instruments.
This is an important role the Diaspora is playing in the economy, why then should they be excluded in bullet train rallies? They have a stake in as much as they have stake in demanding their vote, other African countries allow for the Diaspora vote, why not Zimbabwe?
President Chamisa is bringing a fresh face to our global politics as he ushers our once isolated country into the community of nations.
By Dr. P. Zamchiya | Reader, the primary elections season is upon us. A time to choose between your children. Difficult, but a more compelling case to practice Internal Party Democracy (IPD). I refer to IPD as the extent to which there is an inclusive participatory process by members of the party in decision making processes and a representative outcome.
The failure to uphold IPD during candidate selection can result in party disunity expressed through what I call 4 Ds. First is de-alignment. This is a situation whereby party members unfairly treated during primary elections will choose to participate as independent candidates at ward and constituency levels. Remember the Zimbabwe Independent Alliance (ZIA) in 2013. Second is deviation. Ill-treated members will not leave the party. They will stay in the party, chant slogans, attend rallies, wear party regalia and dance with swagger. If it is in the MDC they will shout the loudest ‘Chamisa chete chete’ in daylight. However, far from the crowd they run a whisper campaign against and on polling day they deliberately vote for another party as a way to express disgruntlement. In sophisticated cases, they can campaign for party President, party councillors, but for MP [if it is the bone of unfairness] they deviate. You are right its bhora musango. Third, is defection. Here unhappy party members can defect en masse to other political parties. Fourth is de-legitimisation. A situation where the disgruntled will expose the party’s undemocratic practices. A combination of these 4Ds will negatively affect electoral performance.
Contrary to my propositions, others like Duverger and Sartori have argued that IPD threatens practical efficiency and can weaken the party’s capacity to compete for political power. Drawing from May’s ‘law of curvelinearity’ they posit that party members do not represent the needs of ordinary voters because they tend to be more ideologically extreme than both party elites and general voters. However, there is no systemic empirical evidence to suggest that party members are more ideologically extreme or that the oligarchic judgment of party leaders will help the party win an election. My scientific observation on party activists in Zimbabwe have concluded that grassroots activists are generally closer to the ordinary voter than elites from party headquarters. I challenge for more studies!
Reader, I am not arguing for a utopian model of IPD. There are practical constraints such as political manoeuvring of parties as they seek electoral alliances, youth and gender considerations. My point is when faced with such constraints the leadership should not unilaterally make decisions as a default position. As Teorell has argued, the idea is to establish deliberative procedures for the exchange of arguments between party leaders and party members. When the views of the party elites diverge from those of the activists-or the party’s voters for that matter-they have a special responsibility to give reasons for their dissenting verdict. Reader, the legitimate basis for such claims would be the force of the argument and not size of the stick.
I therefore do not ignore practical realities necessary to regulate the participation of party members in decision-making but ask for deliberative and compelling platforms. For example, Childs argues that, ‘if left alone, party selection processes are unlikely to produce parity of descriptive representation for women and men’. There is indeed enough empirical evidence to suggest that party structures are unrepresentative of their party’s voters in demographic terms. Political parties are not only dominated by men but the society at large is patriarchal. Here, there is need to move from the traditional conceptualisation of IPD and argue that representations of women and youths, previously excluded from democratic institutions constitute indicators of IPD.
Nevertheless, we do not want a situation where political practical considerations are used as an excuse to hide behind what really explains party transgressions in Zimbabwe’s political parties today. If we are to follow the iron law of oligarchy, subversion of IPD is largely accounted for by the rise of a small group of politicians at a local and national level usually aided by the bureaucracy. This group makes decisions to protect and consolidate their power and personal interests rather than of the members they represent and the broader party goals. The oligarchs believe they know more than members and that they are infallible. This is a cancer in Zimbabwe’s party politics. A dangerous conception that affects electoral performance.
All ills that undermine IDP and lead to the 4Ds must be fumigated. Basics are important. Providing the electoral college to all candidates, banning vote buying, an impartial, competent and accountable personnel running the primary elections, transparency in the number of ballot papers printed and distributed, no transportation of ballot papers before counting, all voting stations placed in neutral places, no superimposition by hook or crook by the oligarchy to mention some and hands off state institutions.
In summary, IPD helps to construct public deliberations on democracy, profiles the party’s electoral image as one committed to more democratic principles, affords an opportunity to choose popular candidates, lessens intra-party conflict and improves the party’s chances of winning an election. This is even more important for the opposition parties which face external constraints like an evil trend of state-financialisation of our politics and other electoral malpractices. Therefore, there is a compelling need to minimise internally generated conflict which will lead to deviation, de-legitimisation, de-alignment and defections with devastating electoral consequences.
Advocate Nelson Chamisa | Fellow Zimbabweans, in keeping with our Gogogoi Tisvikewo/Ekuhle campaign, I was in rural Seke and Mhondoro over the weekend where people were unequivocal in their determination and resolve to vote for transformation and palpable change in the next election.
We have said we are prioritizing the rural areas where the majority of Zimbabweans live.
On Saturday and Sunday, I was in Seke and Mhondoro where the despondent people in those rural communities can no longer afford the laughter any more. I interacted with business people, opinion and community leaders who all narrated to me the sad tale of their current penury and suffering.
They told me the now familiar national story of the collapsed infrastructure and social services; especially health and education and how the old and the infirm are struggling to survive under this inept government.
At the two rallies, I had the occasion to articulate our vision on the five key pillars of governance, the economy, infrastructure rehabilitation, social services and international re-engagement.
On governance, our government will govern and not rule. Governance involves engaging and listening to the people while ruling presupposes talking down to them. Our government will look after everyone regardless of their political affiliation.
On the economy, our vision is to have a modern, inclusive and diversified economy by 2023.
On social services, especially health and education, we want to ensure the nation is well served in these areas. On health, we have a comprehensive blueprint that includes both child care and adult care, a plan in which those with terminal and chronic ailments such as cancer, tuberculosis, HIV/Aids and other ailments will be able to access treatment for free. Our old people above the age of 65 would also be able to access free medical care in all public hospitals. We have a plan to set up the best health facility in the region for those living with albinism so that they can have access to glasses and special lotions. On education, our government will provide free primary education and resuscitate loans and grants for tertiary students so as to give reprieve to suffering Zimbabweans.
Through infrastructure rehabilitation, we will be able to provide employment to the millions of our young and old who are failing to get a job. We will resuscitate roads, railways, airports, industries and other infrastructure in a massive way that will create jobs through public works programmes. We have already secured funding for infrastructure rehabilitation so that Zimbabweans can find a reason to hope again.
On international engagement, our mantra is that Zimbabwe will be best for business. Zimbabwe will be a safe haven for investment as investors will be assured of the safety of their ventures. We pledge to audit and revise all business deals being signed by the current government to see if they truly benefit the people and the country. It is ironic that every day we hear this or that mega deal has been signed when all we see around us is the mega-poverty facing the people!
At Mubaira growth point in Mhondoro in Mashonaland West, I found yet another despondent rural community in the midst of plenty. These are the people favoured with the huge platinum reserves at the nearby Ngezi platinum mine but who are slugging it out in a quest to put foot on the table.
I heard sad stories of how our traditional leaders are failing to make ends meet. Of the 276 chiefs in the country. Only 56 were given vehicles as the current government desperately tries to curry favour with the traditional leaders. We pledge t give dignity to these custodians of our culture.
We are promising the best for the people of this country. As one young musician said in the captivating lyrics that have become the anthem of our electoral campaign, we pledge to take Zimbabwe to the next level.
Next week, we set off for yet another rural community to interact with people in the rural areas where the majority of Zimbabweans live.
Ode to the country’s toiling workers
Today is May Day or Workers’ Day, that special day reserved to celebrate the world’s working people. For us as a party, this day has a special meaning because the labour movement is our venerated parentage.
We are a party borne out of the sweat, blood, tears and toil of the working people of Zimbabwe. We are a party formed out of the resolutions of the hustling workers of this country following the working people’s convention held in Harare in 1999.The convention was there where the working people resolved to form this great movement that continues to grow in leaps and bounds as testified by the party’s growing support and the huge numbers voluntarily turning up at our gatherings.
It is sad that this is the first May Day commemoration that Zimbabweans are holding in the absence of our dear icon, Dr Morgan Richard Tsvangirai, the firebrand ZCTU secretary-general who together with the late Gibson Sibanda and others founded this epic movement—the MDC—the mammoth movement that has shaken the regime to the core in the last two decades.
May the dear souls of two great sons of our labour movement rest in eternal peace.
Together with the student and constitutional movement, the workers of this country were the first to say Enough is enough.
The country has long fallen prey to the vagaries of ineptitude which have led to the collapse of our industry; indeed a massive industrial collapse that has created a burgeoning unemployment rate that now stands northwards of 95 percent.
Today, our economy has become highly informalized while over three million of our educated sons and daughters have left the country in search of greener pastures.
The new workers are those millions vending by the sides of our streets. Today, I salute all of you for eking an honest living.
You are the new entrepreneurs and you are the heroes of our land.
To those mothers struggling to put food on the table in our rural and urban communities, you are the new workers and I want to use this day to pay tribute to your daily tribulations in ensuring that Zimbabwe’s families are fed.
To Zimbabweans in the Disapora, who slug it out under trying conditions to send a few dollars to your parents, you are the workers that are keeping the families back home alive.
I want to use this day to salute you.
To our patriotic civil servants, I acknowledge you all. Our doctors, nurses, teachers, police officers, those in the army and other government institutions who continue to serve despite your inadequate salaries, I say may God bless you all. We take note of your great service to the people of Zimbabwe.
We note with great concern the ill-treatment of our doctors and nurses and the rest of the civil service. There is misery galore for our hard-working and patriotic civil servants. The recent debacle regarding our nurses and doctors shows that we need new and competent hands on the wheel of government.
Job security, safety at the workplace and decent wages are key issues affecting both public sector workers and the few who are still in private sector employment. The teaching profession, together with other sectors in the public service, has become an outpost of poverty.
To the commuter bus drivers and their aides who ferry passengers every day, you are the unsung heroes who play an important role in our lives.
To our pensioners and those who lost their life savings due to the ineptitude of this regime, we will restore the proceeds of your toil and we dedicate this day to your service and sacrifice to this country.
Whatever we are doing in this highly in-formalized environment, we are all part of the working people of Zimbabwe and we dedicate this special day to you.
Today, there is nothing to celebrate and all we can do is commemorate and pay tribute to our sweat, our blood and our tears as we all seek to eke an honest living in these trying times.
To the few who are still in formal employment, this is the last May Day of the workers without a bonus, without decent wages and without work-place representation. This is the last May Day for the workers to experience the undermining of their labour rights and the belittling of ILO standards.
This is the last May Day of disrespect of the Kadoma Declaration; of a government disrespectful and contemptuous of its agreements with workers.
Workers must unite and expect a truly new dispensation so that they join the rest of workers globally in living a decent life and enjoying the dignity of their hard work and the profit of their sweat.
The year 2018 is the best opportunity for workers of Zimbabwe to enjoy transformation, opportunities and prosperity.
From August this year after the next election, the army of the unemployed will join the battalion of the working people in the global labour community.
Behold the new.
Have a blessed May Day Zimbabwe!
Adv. Nelson Chamisa is the MDC-T President and MDC Alliance Presidential candidate. He writes this weekly message every Tuesday to the people of Zimbabwe.
Khupe Gone, Chamisa MDC Women And The Fight For Democracy
by Grace Kwinjeh | The continuous attacks on MDC President Advocate Nelson Chamisa on the basis of former Vice President Thokozani Khupe’s jumping ship are unfortunate requiring a response that sets the record straight.
The main bone of contention being that Khupe made a personal decision to leave the party, abandoning sister comrades she had worked with for years, I am one of those who still cherishes many fond memories in the trenches with the comrade sister.
We are all at pains to understand what informed Khupe’s decision to leave, because for those who have remained and fought it out as women for their spaces in the party, the fight against Zanu PF at this point in history is more important than positions and trashing a brand our late President Morgan Tsvangirai sacrificed and suffered for.
Consequently, one is forced to interrogate Khupe’s abrogation of duty vis-a-vis the opponent’s praises and cheers. What interest does Zanu PF have in Khupe’s victory?
It is simply self-defeating to argue that Khupe’s fight is for the emancipation of women, when all she has done in the last few weeks is to be the vehicle and basis upon which Zanu PF has unleashed the most deadly attacks against Advocate Chamisa and the party he leads.
Taken in view of the fact that women even here in western democracies are still fighting for their spaces, with real fears in Europe of a regression in terms of women’s participation in political parties.
It is therefore, demonstrably foolhardy and sinister to narrow a global women’s fight for emancipation to Advocate Chamisa’s political rise, if anything by his latest pronunciations to advance the cause of women, he joins the ranks of Thomas Sankara and others who have championed the women’s cause.
In any event it is not a given that a female leader will automatically by virtue of sex advance the cause of fellow females and lift their status, we know of rabid female autocrats who rule over other women with no guilt or shame.
By her actions Khupe is inadvertently empowering the very system that has oppressed and marginalised women, making a mockery to the whole MDC brand and what we women as a collective have over the years struggled and fought for. Hired crowds that give comfort to Zanu PF but sadly and I hope she will realise soon the torment the people of Zimbabwe are going through. Yes, Zanu PF can laugh, but who is crying?
Our struggle as MDC women working side by side our brother comrades who include our President Chamisa, was not just about removing Robert Mugabe, it was about dismantling the whole partriarchal Zanu PF system that impoverished the whole nation, with women suffering the most.
Women today are rising to fight against a corrupt system that has short-changed them. We see them in Marange, Hwange and many other places, across the country, rising to fight. Mothers, gogos are not playing games they want change and are cheering a young male leader, their decision is well informed as to the future they want to see.
After serving in the highest organs of the party for close to two decades, it is a lie of the highest order that Khupe has suddenly realised that the MDC is patriarchal and violent.
A lie that simple facts will expose.
When sister Khupe made the decision to leave the party, Advocate Chamisa spent days if not weeks pursuing her in order to convince her to come and take her rightful place in the people’s struggle.
Furthermore, the fact that senior female party leaders and those in the structures did not follow Khupe, resulted in her burning midnight oil amending a dubious version of an MDC constitution to accommodate political wanderers who were looking for homes, we were later to learn.
It is patently clear that people can gain traction by raising gender, race and class related issues in political and social debates. Former President Robert Mugabe was notorious for bashing Western countries at every opportune moment. Therefore, we can see what Khupe is trying to do, but it is very erroneous for her to attribute gender to her political problems.
Zanu PF has used the same method in the past. For a long time Zimbabwe’s opposition has been fed the narrative that by taking a stand against a black nationalist regime, they had invariably become sell outs or to use the derogatory term used in the United States of America in the past, they had become “house niggers”.
That system has now been laid bare and exposed under the so called new dispensation. It was a big lie. A fraud that was used to intimidate and devalue Zimbabwe’s opposition as being clueless when it came to engagement with international players. Now that the proverbial cat is out of the bag, we turn to another case of deception in the making.
These relentless efforts to try and define the MDC Alliance and the MDC led by Advocate Chamisa in particular as violent and patriarchal are not only misleading but very false. They are a sinister characterisation meant to attack and demean the Chamisa and MDC Alliance brand, based on the manipulation of facts to suit a certain narrative.
God willing, one day we will be at liberty to describe the trials and tribulations that other women faced at the hands of Khupe.
Advocate Nelson Chamisa is the man of the moment, a leader many now pin their hope for change and a better Zimbabwe.