Zimbabweans could find it interesting, if not particularly curious, that MDC-T vice-president Nelson Chamisa would challenge the new government of President Emmerson Mnangagwa to approach them for a solution to the cash crisis gripping the country.
What is curious about this proposition is that Chamisa, who is a Member of the National Assembly representing Kuwadzana East, one of the many marginalised areas where the bulk of the residents hardly afford a decent meal a day due to the economic challenges afflicting Zimbabwe, would wait to be approached by a competitor to provide his suggestions.
Doesn’t being a Member of Parliament give him the right to make the proposal to uplift the lives of his constituents? It’s also quite unfortunate that he sounds as if he is speaking tongue in cheek, like someone enjoying the suffering of people who cannot access cash at their banks during this festive season. At least he has just returned from the United States of America where, together with Tendai Biti and human rights activist Dewa Mavhinga, they were alleged to have begged for sanctions against Zimbabwe to remain in force as if that would aid the opposition to win the hearts of the suffering citizens at the next elections.
Clearly, if Chamisa and his opposition party really felt for the people, they would be pro-active and table their solutions through the right channels than taunt the government, and the nation at large, in the manner that they did. So, they would rather see people continue to suffer simply because Mnangagwa — who is probably not affected by the cash crisis — has not approached them for a solution? Has the opposition not learnt from their many blunders of the past? We wonder!
It appears, they have been thrown off balance by the November developments, and certainly need to employ other tactics to win the hearts of the citizenry. Hollow mantras will not help the opposition at all, the citizens demand substance — they need a clear plan of how they will extricate the country from its present quagmire. So, if Mnangagwa can do what is needed in the shortest possible period left before elections, Zimbabweans will vote for continuity; and if he fails, the voters will choose the next guy. But the next guy may not always be the MDC-T or MDC Alliance unless all of them gather under one umbrella body — which is not currently the case.
We believe it is time for the MDC-T to start regarding itself as part of the solution to the Zimbabwe crisis, otherwise they would quickly lose their relevance, especially if Mnangagwa fulfils his promise to drastically change things for the better in the next 100 days.
In fact, the manner in which the message was delivered creates the impression that they know the source, or who is responsible for the cash crisis in Zimbabwe, thus, they appear to have the right solutions they believe have eluded everybody else.
Following Mnangagwa’s State of the Nation Address, the MDC-T, in their analysis or response, should have offered a counter presentation detailing their own thinking and how best the issues concerning citizens could be dealt with. That would actually help in keeping them relevant and demonstrating to voters that their own ideas — even if implemented by the Zanu PF regime — work and, therefore, they are likely to woo potential voters.
To merely bark from the terraces is unhelpful to anyone, including themselves.