Put egos aside, form grand coalition to win

For the past year or so, speculation was rife that Zimbabwean political parties were on the verge of setting up a grand coalition to fight Zanu PF in the next elections, but there was always a nagging feeling that egos would scupper any such agreement.


MDC-T seemed the most amenable to a coalition, with axed Vice-President Joice Mujuru, raising hopes that arguably the two most popular opposition politicians were going to work together to fight the ruling party and end its hegemonic hold on the country.


But events of the last few weeks are beginning to put paid to hopes of a coalition and instead the parties seem to be further drifting apart.

As they say, a day is a long time in politics, meaning these two years before the elections are literally a lifetime, and so much can change in-between.

However, if opposition parties were sincere about taking on Zanu PF, then the foundation of a coalition should be put in place right now instead of scurrying to unite at the last minute.

Previous coalition attempts have failed because parties leave everything to the last minute or lack sincerity and we feel this is the route they are taking once again and this could only spell tragedy for the opposition.

We cannot overstate the value of coalitions, as history has shown us that if MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai, on one hand, and then independent candidate Simba Makoni and the MDC, on the other, had united in 2008, mathematically they would have defeated President Robert Mugabe and Zanu PF, but egos took over.

The same egomania that prevailed in 2008 seems to be setting in, and the perennial question is: Who will lead the coalition?

Mujuru has already been accused of having a big sister attitude, while Tsvangirai has said he will not defer to her because he has been in the trenches for longer and risked life and limb.

Both attitudes are unhelpful and retrogressive. It is a moot point that Tsvangirai has been fighting Mugabe longer, while Mujuru brings with her the liberation war gravitas.

They both have very strong points, but their weaknesses are all too glaring and instead of focusing on why they will not join each other, more energy should be spent on complementing their strengths instead of magnifying their shortcomings.

None of them has a monopoly to lead the opposition and anyone can be a leader of a coalition. What Zimbabweans are desperate for is unity of purpose, rather than personalities that are willing to embark on a scorched earth policy just to ensure that no one usurps their imaginary roles as de facto leaders of the opposition.

The infighting within Zanu PF has opened a window of opportunity for opposition parties. If they do not take advantage of this, then they will have no one to blame if they are unsuccessful at the next polls.

21 Responses to Put egos aside, form grand coalition to win

  1. kwaMaranda February 18, 2016 at 6:45 am #

    Mujuru has been a part and player in oppressing us, brutalising us, murdering our collegues (remember Talent Mabika et al)..she has just come out of those luxuries of murdering/ or supporting the merudering of opposition activists. She can not just come from position of luxury and lead us. That can happen. She must reflect, repent, kureurura including their partcipation in planning and meting violence gainst zimbabweans…she can have it all.

    • kwaMaranda February 18, 2016 at 6:51 am #


  2. Togaraseyi February 18, 2016 at 7:43 am #

    The trouble with coalitions is that even if leaders of these political parties agree to unite, their supporters will never accept their leaders to play second fiddle to anyone hence they also end up wanting to be the ones to lead.

  3. MAN KENYA February 18, 2016 at 8:05 am #

    Two cannot walk together unless they agree. Unless they accept to compromise and harmonize their differences, these leaders will leave a more divided and bruised opposition than ever.

  4. Lets Befair February 18, 2016 at 9:03 am #

    Mr. Editor, I am surprised by your comment. Only recently you were gloating over the supposed ‘snub’ by Mujuru’s party of Tsvangison over the signing of code of conduct of elections (or something of that sort), but now Chematama has said he cannot just join hands with those ZANU PF people (they were forced out – they did not resign), you start to see the need for a coalition. Apparently what Tsvangison says ‘No’ to, you say ‘Yes’ and what he says ‘Yes’ to, you say ‘No’. Your double standards don’t do you any good. The same attitude that you accuse ZANU PF leaders and the likes of The Herald of is what you actually have. It is well known that you support Welsh, but his party is rotting away, unfortunately for you. Please be objective, for our fight is against powerful forces of evil. Otherwise history will judge you harshly.

  5. tose tiri vanhu February 18, 2016 at 10:09 am #

    wasnt it rugare gumbo who said a co-allition can only be led by mujuru after the mdc said they were willing to work with all and sundry to dislodge zanu pf?so whose ego should we be talking about here?if someone responds to hogwash ndiye akunzi atadza kushanda nevamwe?lets be obejective pple and stop thinking with our emotions

  6. Critical Ally February 18, 2016 at 10:17 am #

    Its a pity our Private media is no longer private Zanu Pf has influence in their publications hence these nosnesnse by respected media house. Mujuru has never repented, she was booted out of the oppressive regime and you now want us to see her like an angel . was good does she bring to opposition politics coz so far she has never exosed any dirty tricks they used vari ku zanu?

  7. Critical Ally February 18, 2016 at 10:21 am #

    Its a pity our Private media is no longer private Zanu Pf has influence in their publications hence these nonsense by respected media houses. Mujuru has never repented, she was booted out of the oppressive regime and you now want us to see her like an angel . wat good does she bring to opposition politics because so far she has never exposeded any dirty tricks they used vari ku zanu? She has never come out in open and Challenge R.G.M her Godfather proving she is still siding with the old man.

  8. dj February 18, 2016 at 11:27 am #

    newsday muri kupihwa mari na joice chete imi ahh

  9. Garwe February 18, 2016 at 12:16 pm #

    Its really surprising how some people enjoy being in the opposition. Do you think Tsvangirai is ever going to beat Zanu pf? How long has he been trying. Say arikubirirwa, but isnt it time to try other things? Whats to stop him from being cheated in 2018? Hanzi hee, aive mu ZANU, iwe mai vako vaisava kuZANU? Ko Sekuru vako? Varume nevakadzi vemaZambia vanonetsa in whatever color. You think kuti Tsvangirai will do something different when he has failed all along

    • Sagitarr February 18, 2016 at 2:31 pm #

      The whole thrust is to get a democratically elected leader, so far, MT has been the only person who stood in a national election and beta Mugabe. The results were rigged against him and his party. Whether he can be an effective leader is something else and it is difficult and unfair to judge before one has been in the position.

      Most people want free, fair and credible elections Garwe – what about you?

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  11. Musona February 18, 2016 at 12:37 pm #

    Nonsense from Newsday Editorial. When a group of people form a party they are doing so as an alternative to the party which is governing. The moment a party goes into coalition with another party then they might as well fold and join this other party because their policies are now compromised and therefore no longer credible. Why be piggybacked by another party? Or why be piggybacked by another party? Have you no confidence? Why form a party and expect to go into coalition near the election day with the hope of ousting your coalition partners some day? It’s wishy-washy for a political party worth its salt. We have just had a useless coalition government which has only strengthened Mugabe’s hold on power. You cannot have two bulls (parties) in one pen or kraal. Joshua Nkomo formed a coalition with Mugabe and where did that take us? – dictatorship. I say “No” to grand coalitions. If your party is too small to contest then please fold and join bigger parties. What is the point of going into coalition with Welshman’s two-member party which got, was it 0.02%, in the last election?

  12. Musona February 18, 2016 at 12:50 pm #

    One sentence should read, “Or why piggyback another party?”

  13. Politics February 18, 2016 at 1:03 pm #

    What has Mai Mujuru done to deserve all this credit???….. she is just another war vet who was put at the top as a way of rewarding her husbands role, she has been part of zimbabwes rule for the past 36 years and zim has never got any better… If Mai Mujuru has repented and she wants to gain credibility she should show us by supporting the cause of opposition parties and not to tell us she has reformed and she still wants to rule .. it shows that she is just zanu and she believes she has to rule for life.

    According to war vets she never shot down anything it was all fabrication…. according to Prof Moyo .. The ascendants of Mujuru had to be stopped as she is a true zanu and she would strengthen zanu even more, that’s why they held their tsholotsho declaration meeting when mujuru was being appointed vice president as this would make his plan to destroy zanu from within even more difficult. So she is a true zanu…….

    Tsvangson can still win … we however need true opposition parties to join hands and not infiltrated parties … Opposition has never succeeded because of infiltration and mai mujuru is likely to come with many Mugabe sympathisers on board… zanu is so divided and it will be bhora musango come 2018 so why do we want to keep propping up zanu through mai Mujuru….???

  14. Sagitarr February 18, 2016 at 2:25 pm #

    How did you arrive at the conclusion that Joice Mujuru is popular, to the extent of comparing him to MT? Her party is only a week old – her popularity is restricted to an undemocratic party, itself which was rejected by voters consistently since 1985 but has clung to power through coercion, threats, murders and rigging elections etc They were part of an evil oppressive system, how do we know they are now clean? They haven’t even apologised for their deeds.

    She still has to prove her support is real not virtual.

    Personally, all these people that are pretending to understand “the people’ s plight” only AFTER being ejected from ZPF do not impress me an iota. They’re the most dangerous, unpredictable, callous, backstabbing hypocrites we will ever have. They’re simply an inherited variant of ZPF and offer nothing genuine and new. They are simply power hungry….and fake.

  15. Magorimbo February 18, 2016 at 2:46 pm #

    Coalition is all about boadroom arrangements. This arrangement has no benefit to supporters of parties.We need different parties to represent different voices.People should have choices.Why limiting people choices to two parties.A party that will win election should implement its policies without comprimise.

  16. marie February 18, 2016 at 4:11 pm #

    in a free and fair election MDC (i hate the T at the end) and Tsvangirai will rout all these parties yes. But they need pf for inside knowledge

  17. mairy_thomas February 18, 2016 at 4:48 pm #

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  18. Freestate February 18, 2016 at 4:59 pm #

    MDC -T need not fold under PF. Its Mai Mujuru and co that should join the MDC. Its a myth that this woman was popular. Ingawani she was fired from Zanu pf and none of her supporters protested like Team Lacoste are doing right now. In 2004 she was propped up by Bob after Lacoste was a run away winner, they had to change the constitution to stifle Lacoste. I agree with other commentators that she needs to prove herself as an opposition leader. She has not held a single rally since been fired and now people think that she’s a force in Zim politics? How?

  19. Predator February 18, 2016 at 7:38 pm #

    “lt took 17 years for us to gain independence at gun war.it’s too early to say MDC has lost through election.”

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