Churches call for Chamisa, ED dialogue

THE Zimbabwe Council of Churches (ZCC) has appealed to the ruling Zanu PF party leadership to engage Nelson Chamisa’s MDC Alliance to map the way forward following the July 30 disputed elections.

BY SILAS NKALA

ZCC, in a statement yesterday, said the nation needed Zanu PF to commit to dialogue to unite the country and create an inclusive way forward.

“We ask you to consider and prioritise a formal constitutional recognition for the leader of the main opposition, consistent with practices in other developed democracies.

“There is need for revisiting of the electoral laws so as to restore the integrity of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec). Going forward, we ask that the newly-appointed parliamentarians and councillors seek to promote justice and allow the freedoms to continue flourishing,” ZCC said.

The churches appealed to the MDC Alliance to seek recourse in courts instead of resorting to violence.

“We pray that you may address your dissatisfactions through the courts of law, with the aim of seeking redress,” the church grouping said. ZCC said the church leadership was available to facilitate other platforms of engagement to bring a mutually satisfactory closure to the current stand-off.

“We also plead with the MDC Alliance leadership to bear in mind the pressing need to maintain peace and to not take actions that may lead to chaos,” ZCC said.

“National peace is a mutually responsible endeavour that requires you to play your part towards its full attainment.”

The ZCC also said the international community had taken interest at the invitation of being observers in this election, with ZCC grateful of the views by the international community, based on their experiences.

“We plead with the international community not to continue to isolate Zimbabwe on the basis of the shortcomings of this election.


“You are fully aware that the punitive measures on the new government will not affect those in leadership, but the ordinary Zimbabweans. We believe that it is in the interest of Zimbabweans to access healthcare, education and basic social services and that the nation will flourish and grow a robust democracy.”

The churches’ organisation raised concern that since November 2017, there remained deep suspicion within and among the different arms of the security sector.

“The church and citizens feel anxious and unsettled, fearing the prospect of instability. We plead with the President-elect to urgently constitute broad-based security services reforms that will guarantee the professionalism of the security forces.

“As long as there are Zimbabweans who feel excluded and marginalised, as long as there are Zimbabweans who are thirsty, as long as there are Zimbabweans who are wandering in the Diaspora longing to come home, but are afraid of uncertainties, God looks and hears their cry from Heaven,” the church grouping said.

“God is saying the solution is not far away, the fountain is just close by. Let us all open our eyes, we have the solution. The solution lies not in our separation, but in our reconciliation on the basis of justice.”

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