Opposition in shambles weeks before Zimbabwe’s polls

Movement for Democratic Change (MDC-Alliance) leader, Nelson Chamisa

Movement for Democratic Change (MDC-Alliance) leader, Nelson Chamisa

from MARCUS MUSHONGA in Harare, Zimbabwe
HARARE, (CAJ News) – ZIMBABWE’S main opposition is in a race against time to put its house in order ahead of watershed elections set for the end of July.

Eight weeks before the polls, the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) Alliance is beset by jostling for positions, infighting, internal violence and incomplete primary elections nationwide, which is seen as working in the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union – Patriotic Front (ZANU–PF), which has since overcome its internal problems.

A fractured MDC is represented by two factional leaders, Nelson Chamisa and Thokozani Khupe, who have both claimed legitimacy after the death of founding president, Morgan Tsvangirai, in February.

The party is yet to establish its election manifesto because of the internal shambles and the fight against electoral authorities that the opposition argues has failed to level the playing field for the elections.

Khupe’s faction is even against holding of the polls on July 30, arguing the date was too close and did not factor in opposition’s demands for electoral reforms.

Among the demands include the auditing of the voters’ roll. The splinter group is against the alleged involvement of the military in the election process.

“There is an uneven election ground as the system is still ignoring the abuse of women in politics due to the patriarchal nature of Zimbabwean politics,” Khupe added.

The other MDC faction for Chamisa is experiencing violence following disgruntled supporters threatened to lock the party leader out of its headquarters in Harare over incomplete primary elections.

Bloody clashes have characterised the exercise, such as in the capital city’s Epworth candidate Earthrage Kureva is alleged to have used violence and intimidation to win the primaries.

Similar scenes have been experienced in Mutare, the country’s fourth largest city.

Prosper Mutseyami, a former Musikavanhu parliamentarian, has been injured after a rival party camp attacked him.

Internal polls were also shambolic in the tourist attraction district of Nyanga North.

Welshman Ncube, spokesperson of the MDC Aliance, summed up the chaos derailing the opposition’s preparations.

“If we do not change the State House issue, that is the President, we won’t be doing ourselves any favours,” Ncube said.

“Instead, we should all be fighting to change the government (ZANU-PF, not internally fighting),” Ncube added.

Runesu Zhakata of Epworth said time was running out for the opposition to launch its manifesto and challenge ZANU-PF.

“This confirms the Zimbabwean opposition has nothing to offer except bad-mouthing about the ruling party,” Zhakata said.

The opposition’s skirmishes are in contrast to ZANU-PF’s fortunes.

Incumbent Emmerson Mnangagwa has held massive rallies in opposition strongholds and charmed investors and the electorate with his call for credible polls.
– CAJ News

Short URL: http://cajnewsafrica.com/?p=26702

Posted by on Jun 5 2018. Filed under Africa & World, Featured, National, News, Regional. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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