MDC legislator, Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga has lashed out at what she described, as a “male-dominated narrative” pervading the talk of a coalition ahead of elections expected next year.
BY VENERANDA LANGA
Opposition parties have proposed to field a single candidate to challenge President Robert Mugabe in next year’s presidential election, but Misihairabwi-Mushonga, in an exclusive interview with NewsDay, argued the current narrative ignores the views of women.
The tough-talking MP said at a personal level, she was opposed to the idea of a “few representatives of political parties, making decisions for millions of Zimbabweans on issues of how to remove the Zanu PF government from power”, saying she did not see a coalition in the envisaged format working.
“We should have a mass public opinion process to gather views from the people on how a coalition should come into play and the question we should be asking people is: What should be done to get rid of Zanu PF?” she said.
“That is how elections in the United States were lost by the Democrats because the pollsters were not asking the right questions to the right people – and now we are stuck with this coalition narrative and we seem to believe it may work, yet it may not.”
Misihairabwi-Mushonga urged women to actively get involved in the selection of a suitable candidate to lead the proposed coalition.
“It is time for women to mobilise themselves and start giving a different narrative. For instance, is it true that in the Zanu PF succession matrix all women think Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa or any other man must succeed Mugabe? We never see any women in the succession and coalition discourses and it is problematic,” she said.
Misihairabwi-Mushonga said the person to lead a coalition should be chosen through a popular vote by the people, and must not necessarily be a politician.
“The problem is that the coalition issue is a male-centred negotiation and usually men are stuck on who is bigger, has a bigger car, money, and so on. When men look inside their pants, they actually believe they are bigger. The issue here is to remove Mugabe and Zanu PF in 2018 and it is not about who is bigger. It is about people choosing a candidate that can deliver – whether it is a man or woman,” the former Cabinet minister
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