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Chamisa's e-rally speech Fulltext

29 Sep 2020 at 07:49hrs | Views
THIS month marks the 21st anniversary of our struggle, our journey and our formidable political formation called the MDC which morphed into the MDC Alliance following processes which saw founding stalwarts being reunited once again.

Through the MDC Alliance, we have reconnected, reunited and re-ignited national hope so that together, we collectively achieve what we set out to achieve in 1999.

On September 11, 1999, this movement was formed at Rufaro Stadium and the country's political terrain would never be the same again.

We salute the over 32 civic organisations that came together through the national working people's convention at the Women's Bureau in Harare in 1999 just prior to the launch of the working people's party.

The year saw the birth of a great movement borne out of the sweat of labour, the constitutional movement, the student movement, women's groups, war veterans and youth groups, with labour having fronted the people's quest for change.

Fronting this cause was the great icon Morgan Tsvangirai ably assisted by the indefatigable Gibson Sibanda and many others who came from the labour movement.

I and many others were also part of this historic moment, with myself and others having come from the student movement.

At our inaugural congress in Chitungwiza in January 2000, a number of leaders were voted into the national leadership of this great movement to steer forward the national hope for a new Zimbabwe. I will forever remain humbled for being voted among the first team of senior leaders of the party, when the inaugural congress expressed its confidence in me and overwhelmingly elected me the party's founding national youth chairperson.

Fellow Zimbabweans, it is heartening to take note that most of the founding members of the party are with the MDC Alliance today and are still leading across our structures.

And yes, their eyes remain firmly focused on what we sought to achieve when the MDC was formed 21 years ago. Many of these founding cadres are in the national, provincial, constituency and branch structures of the people's party, the MDC Alliance.

Today we remain resolute, resilient and vigilant. The real issues facing our country today of hunger, joblessness, a dead economy, a broken public health system, the water crisis and poverty make the need for a viable alternative ever more urgent.

We refuse to be swallowed.
We guard our zones of autonomy. We increase the cost of dictatorship in Zimbabwe.
We fight the pillars of tyranny.
We continue to articulate the illegitimacy of the unelected and unelectable.
We assert our credibility as a viable and bankable alternative.

Twenty-one years on, we remain focused on our original goal which has always been to achieve positive transformation in the lives of the people of Zimbabwe.

And true to our founding values and objectives, we remain unstinting and on course in our quest to consign repression to the dustbin and to give succour and happiness to our country's citizens.

We, a peaceful people, are being broken. We are peace-loving citizens who are being harassed, maimed and terrorised.

Since 1999, over 2 000 people have died on account of political violence. Richard Chiminya, Patrick Nabanyama, Beta Chokururama, Cain Nyeve, Takundwa Chipunza, Joshua Bakacheza, Shepherd Jani, Elliot-PFebve, Tonderai Ndira, Talent Mabika, to mention but a few.

Since 2017, 105 people are on record as having been abducted. All these people targeted for dehumanisation, abuse and murder, mainly for supporting the struggle for change and the people's movement.

Nearly 50 have been murdered in cold blood. You know that on of August 1, 2018, Harare CBD was turned into an urban warzone.

In January 2019, the whole country was under siege. For two weeks they punished millions, injured over 1 000 and killed nearly 20 of our citizens, for no crime.

All this to weaken the resolve of the indomitable people of Zimbabwe and subtract people's support to the struggle. The regime is scared.

Today, we celebrate 21 years of struggle and leadership.

For 21 years, we have endured pain.

Our endurance and commitment to change by elections and a national consensus has been tested.

For 21 years, each new day has presented new challenges. Our 21-yearold desire to avoid playing a zero-sum game with fellow Zimbabweans, and with our opposite number appears to have yielded little benefit.

For 21 years, we had hoped that we could establish consensual politics in which the old would agree to transform at the direction of the new. That the old guard would admit its mistakes and allow the country to take a new trajectory without smarting over change. This, we thought, would hasten the rate of change by allowing us to concentrate on the way forward. They have taken this for a weakness and aimed their guns at us.

For 21 years, we have hoped that the ruling elite would find the value in moving towards consensus. They have rebuffed and insulted us.

For 21 years, they have dared us and the young people by driving the country faster towards the abyss. Our path to lead towards a peaceful resolution of the myriad of crises, has been scoffed at.

For 21 years, we have remained committed to Zimbabwe and respect for regional growth and progress. We have held firm and continued to persuade the regime away from failed leadership, corrupt primitive accumulation and incompetence.

For 21 years, we have spoken out in public, organised demonstrations and engaged them in various platforms, including Parliament.

For 21 years, we have fought for human rights, named and shamed the perpetrators for crimes against humanity, murders, wars against the people, corruption and theft. We called them out for crimes against women and children, for torture, abductions and abuse of the State. This has been a journey of both tears and laughter.

This month, we remember our long journey of joy and tears, our eventful odyssey of pain and laughter. We have had our prouds and sorries in the last 21 years but we have taken them all in our stride.

Among our sorries has been the loss of the many men and women across the vast span of our great movement; the many people who have paid the ultimate price in their quest for a new Zimbabwe, an idea for which they strenuously fought throughout their lives.

Nelson Chamisa is the MDC Alliance leader

Source - Nelson Chamisa
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