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Chamisa in strategic blunder

by Staff reporter
12 Oct 2023 at 06:43hrs | Views
Opposition Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) leader Nelson Chamisa announced that his party would temporarily withdraw from all council and parliamentary business in protest over the recall of 15 MPs and 17 councillors from the Matebeleland region which a group of researchers has called a strategic blunder.

Chamisa called on the government to address these "illegal" recalls within 14 days, or the CCC would completely pull out of Parliament and local government. The CCC supporters who claimed to be the party's interim secretary-general, Sengezo Tshabangu, recalled the MPs and councillors, alleging they were no longer party members.

The CCC MPs did not attend the National Assembly sittings in solidarity with their recalled colleagues, who had been ejected from Parliament a day earlier. Speaker of the National Assembly, Jacob Mudenda, also ruled to ban CCC MPs for the next six sittings and dock their allowances for protesting against President Emmerson Mnangagwa's state of the nation address during the official opening of the 10th Parliament.

Chamisa accused Zanu-PF of using the recall process to "bring Zanu-PF through the backdoor" and expressed dissatisfaction with the "systematic" purging of MPs from Matebeleland. The CCC has requested that Parliament restores the recalled MPs and is also reaching out to Zanu-PF for dialogue to address electoral disputes.

Zanu-PF has distanced itself from the recalls. A group of researchers from the Zimbabwe Democracy Institute (ZDI) encouraged the CCC to exert pressure on Zanu-PF, resist attempts to co-opt its leaders or manipulate them through legal or extra-legal means, and seek regional and international solidarity and support for its cause.

ZDI suggested that Chamisa's decision to disengage was a strategic blunder, as it meant the CCC would do no work in the 33 out of 34 urban municipalities it controls and runs with its mayors, councilors, and board chairpersons, causing it to lose its claim to being a pro-people movement.

Former Zanu-PF politburo member Jonathan Moyo criticized Chamisa's move as a knee-jerk publicity stunt that failed to serve the interests of the electorate. Moyo believed that meaningful pro-people strategies and options were available but disengagement from Parliament and urban councils was unimaginative and amounted to short-changing the electorate.

Source - newsday