Nelson Chamisa is one of the surviving founder members of MDC. He launched his illustrious political career as a Zimbabwe National Student Union leader in the 1990s. In 1998 he attended the National Working Peoples’s Convention held at the Women’s Bureau in Hillside Harare. The Convention layed the foundations for the formation of a “broad based movement for democratic change”. I was privileged to prepare a paper for Delegates on “Labour and the Economy”.
Chamisa was in the thick of things when we formed the MDC. He criss crossed the whole country with the likes of Tendai Biti, Paurina Mpariwa, Remus Makuvaza, Nicholas Mudzengere, Mlambeni, Job Sikhala, Learnmore Jongwe, Tafadzwa Musekiwa, Dr Mudzingwa, Elliot Pfebve, Grace Kwinjeh, James Makore, Gift Chimanikire and many others too numerous to mention.
These leaders were deployed across the country to form interim MDC structures. I was deployed in Harare with the likes of Cephas Makuyana, Murai, Machingauta Machingauta, Kwirinjeh, Jambani Gombera, Karimatsenga, Vilika, Munyanyi, Mai Dandajena, Ms Muguti, Mutambu, Mbuya Mazanhi, Nyoka, Mujuru and others.
At the inaugural MDC Congress in 2000 at the Acquatic Centre, Chamisa was elected the first MDC Youth Chairman. He outclassed Musundure. He was then elected into the first MDC National Executive. Chamisa also held the positions of National Organizing Secretary, Information and Publicity and National Standing Committee member. Chamisa has fought for freedom, democracy and human rights in Zimbabwe. He has beeen a consistent, dedicated and principled MDC cadre.
He was one of Morgan Tsvangirai’s trusted lieutenants since the formation of MDC. No wonder why he deservingly was appointed Vice President in 2017. A hard working and diligent person Chamisa became ICT Minister during the inclusive government. The media judged him “Minister of the Year “twice. Due to his maturity he defended the party on 2 splits. He stayed the course with Morgan Tsvangirai. He never wavered or dithered. His political career was not without its own dangers.
He was brutalized by agents of the regime at the Harare International Airport in broad daylight. He was butchered at Machipisa Police Station in Highfiels together with MT, Madhuku, Biti and others. This was during the aborted Save Zimbabwe Rally. Nelson campaigned for the No Vote which succeeded in 2000.
He is a fearless leader. One of his exploits include the disruption of the Chidyausiku Constitutional Commission meeting at Girls High in 2000. Chamisa grabbed all the documents from Chief Justice Chidyausiku. The meeting ended prematurely. We were at St Andrews House that evening and Chamisa incited youths to go to Girls High. Chamisa became has been Member of Parliament for Kuwadzana since 2003. His role in Parliament has been legendary. His contributions to oversight and parliamentary democracy is in the public domain.
He sits in the Standing Orders and Rules Committee of Parliament. Chamisa is a scholar par excellence. He holds a Higher Diploma in Marketing (IMM) , Bsc Political Science honours degree and LLB from the University of Zimbabwe. He also had his academic stint at the prestigious Stanford University in the USA. Nelson Chamisa is an Advocate practising in Zimbabwe. He is a popular leader loved and liked by all and sundry. An icon of the youths. He is a happy man who bears no grudge against anybody. The party elevated him to the position of President of MDC and Presidential Candidate having considered his credentials and illustrious career in MDC.
However he now has a got a duty to unite the party and lead the MDC Alliance into victory in the July/August elections. I appeal to the MDC family to stop bickering and focus at the bigger picture. Chamisa will fulfil the Vision and Dream of Morgan Tsvangirai and deliver a New Zimbabwe. He is a young but mature and dynamic leader. He represents the new generation of leaders such as Macron of France, Barack Obama of USA and many other emerging leaders of world democracies. Chamisa is respected by business, Labour, Churches, Women and Youth Groups, Civil society, Traditional Leaders. He is reknowned internationally and regionally. He is our best foot forward.