Chamisa gains more ground

MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa

OPPOSITION MDC Alliance Nelson Chamisa has vowed to cause sleepless nights to his political nemesis President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s administration after his party nearly made a clean sweep of all urban local authorities, where it now controls 81% of them.


MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa

In a memo recently sent to various party structures, Chamisa bragged that they now had sway in all key local authorities after winning 26 of the country’s 32 urban councils in the July 30 polls where the party also increased its presence in Parliament.

“From this election, we control over 26 urban councils out of 32 (81%) and we must be proud of that. We won 536 council seats. We control all the metropolitan cities and towns, including Harare and Bulawayo. Our support bases are the majority of active people and taxpayers who contribute about 80% of the taxes collected in the country,” he said.

The MDC Alliance also recorded a massive increase in Parliament, increasing its seats from 41 in 2013 to 88 inclusive of 24 women legislators elected on the proportional representative ticket which runs out in 2023.

Chamisa also clawed more votes than his now later predecessor, Morgan Tsvangirai who had 33,94%, translating to 1 172 349 votes against former President Robert Mugabe’s 61,09%, or 2 110 434 votes in 2013. The party lost control of urban councils in Kwekwe and Redcliff with both electing Zanu PF mayors, and councillors.

But, political analysts said Chamisa’s control of urban centres was insignificant as Zanu PF still had firm control of central governance where key decisions affecting councils were made.

“You need to know that Zimbabwe is a unitary State and those who control central government call the shots. So it may well be true that they control local government authorities which contribute a large chunk to the national fiscus, but that goes to the Treasury and the Treasury is controlled by central government which in turn is controlled by Zanu PF,” analyst Eldred Masunungure said.

“It depends on the circumstances, especially the relationship that the MDC Alliance happens to have with the central government,” he added.

Zanu PF has in the past been accused of frustrating opposition-led councils by suspending them or meddling in their affairs just to make it difficult for them to deliver.

Masunungure said the scenario was likely to continue unless government quickly devolves and give local authorities autonomy to run their own affairs.

Zanu PF legal affairs secretary, Munyaradzi Paul Mangwana said it was wrong for Chamisa to claim to be in control of government’s economic hubs – urban councils.

“The economy of this country is not in towns. The economy of this country is land and land is the economy,” Mangwana said.

“But we have not done any analysis of these figures, because it does not help anyone because Zanu PF is controlling two-thirds majority in Parliament. This is where you make your laws. It also controls the Presidency; urban councils simply serve the people who stay in town.”


  1. Musafadzane nenghema. Time will tell.

  2. not sure but sounds silly and what we would expect from the young politician is that now they are in control of all local authorities there are going to change the urban life by sorting out water situation, lighting,roads etc and in short city life is going to be the envy of all including those in the rural areas, and thats the the kind of statement which we would expect from someone who won a landslide in urban centres.

  3. Comment…Our economy is largely agro and mining based and there is very little in terms of manufacturing in urban areas which are characterised by high unemployment and poverty.. Value addition is only possible if rural areas are producing, poor Chamisa smell the coffee.

    1. So it may well be true that they control local government authorities which contribute a large chunk to the national fiscus..”That comment from Eldred Masunungure is not entirely correct in the sense that urban councils do not control corporate and other taxes from companies within the urban setup. Their control is largely over rates therefore any tax revenue from urban centres falls under the ambit of Zimra who are central government per se.Any attempts to divert those taxes to urban councils are by law illegal. ZANUPF have above all things mastered the skill of frustrating urban councils even where their revenue streams are concerned. It does not help anyone to try and take a confrontational approach with central government because the losers will be the urban populace who are by and large MDC supporters.Avoid confrontation and ZANUPF will leave you to render proper service delivery to your support base. Chamisa needs to learn national politics in the context of the current constitution otherwise he will get a depleted support base come 2023.

  4. What can you expect from a reporter who is embedded in the MDC like Blessed Mhlanga indulges Chamisa’s every whim?

  5. Question is not about rural or urban, national economic hub, but which of the 2 constituences better represented less manipulable, informed free vote, warranting legitimate pride of the successful political suitor.

  6. newsday you are piece of shit.for how long are you going to spew this kind of raw sewage????

  7. They ‘control’ urban councils and yet in Masvingo where MDC Alliance has 7 out of 10 councillors the ZANU candidate won as Deputy Mayor with 7 votes???kkkk….And 4 MDC councillors now happen to own new stands??? How do u get bought on the first day at work and hope to be incorruptible over 5 years??

    I am betting MDC Alliance will become at least 5 new parties by 2023…Keep this message in your archives.

    1. tendai chaminuka

      @Wezhira.zvokwadi here.Saka hapana hapana.Manje manje Nelson anenge anyarara totobvunza kuti matama ari kubvepii

  8. Chamisa controls nothing.

  9. Ma urban town akazara ma employees and unemployed people who don’t even pay rates! Council ichatosvika $1 billion zvikwereti gore rino.

  10. Instead of being cursed,the urban areas are cursing themselves. Imbotambai ne cholera iyo ne MDCA yenyu.

  11. Personally I think urban votes is made of Lawyers, Professors, commercial famers, economist, bankers, CEO of companies,teachers, nurses etc.All these people significantly contribute to the fiscus. Rural vote is made of people who depend on promises they get from government during the elections. Pasant famers are not different from flea market type of business (informal business) Zimbabwe will be the first country in the world if it grows it’s economy from pasant famers.Zanu has the majority votes but it’s important to scrutinize why only rural people who don’t drive the economy are voting for them. They have been getting government support from around year 2000 but we are still importing food. So it’s not about numbers. It’s about the quality of votes that you got. It speaks a lot that as long as you ignore it you will never solve the problems that are before you.

  12. MDC Alliance and Chamisa have to take lessons from EFF and Malema from next door on how to use his “contribution to the fiscus” by holding the government to account. Malema and his EFF with only 10% of the vote are giving the ANC areal run on good governance/corruptionissues.

  13. It’s one man one vote. What you fail to understand is that even in towns zanu pf got substantial votes. Most people voted for mdc purely as a pretest vote. ED is already getting credits post election from the same urban votes. The first one is on the cabinet. All that ED needs to do is to keep on slowly improving all sectors of the economy so that the urban mdc voters keep on giving him more credits. By 2023 those credits will translate into additional votes for Zanu pf. So this election was the best mdc could master. This also happened in 2008 compared to 2013. Already a substantial number of the urban voter will no longer vote for mdc in 2023 because Chamisa made them to believe that elections will always be rigged, and secondly because of his poor showing where during the Concourt live broadcas where he made a full of himself.

  14. How much mining and farming which are the backbone of our economy happens in towns and cities. If 80% or more of our people are unemployed how much do the vendors and touts contribute to the fiscus. No wonder people went with a very weak case to the CONCOURT. Please sit down.

  15. Mr Chanisa. Put country before self. What is your political experience? What are your policies? Are you in politics for self or for country! As a lawyer, you do not respect the law or the Courts. Are you nihilistic?

  16. To have popular support from among the educated & enlightened demography of any nation is true victory indeed. What does a rural herd boy’s vote do for the advancement of civilization honestly?

  17. Poor Chamisa, he had to crow about something and so he crows about nothing! If the opposition can only win 88 seats out of 350 when Zanu PF had imploded, the country’s economy is in ruins, etc. then what hope is there of the opposition ever winning!

    Chamisa was warned not to go into these elections with no reforms in place but he would not listen. He was cocksure MDC will win the rigged elections! He should not be complaining now.

    The real losers here are the people of Zimbabwe who desperately need a competent government but are stuck with Zanu PF all because MDC are helping them get away with rigged elections!

  18. Progressive Zimbabwean

    This is very sad indeed that people like Chamisa who won a significant vote are bragging about things that do not really matter. The statements are divisive and do not help any one. Zanu PF got over 200000 people in Harare and the question us who are they? It could be mostly professionals such as lawyers, accountants and other practitioners and the MDCs 500000 could be mostly vendors etc but that does not matter to an astute politician. One should be embracing those that did not vote for him instead of calling them all sorts of names. Apparently Zanu PF is working on that already. He should also be focusing on service delivery in those urban areas where the protest vote could have been significant.

  19. There is need to unite as zimbabweans and bury our diffrence.even mnangagwa anofanira kuzvininipisa.we have failed 3 generations in time of mugabe.ngatingoratidzei kukura tosiyana netsika dzakaipa dzekubirira sarudzo.for fairness ingopai chamisa nyanga dzake atonge akahwinha wani.moyo yenyu dai iriyekugadzira nyika dai tichigara zvakanaka.mwari haazvidi musaite semusingafi

  20. Urban Councils remain opposition traditional stronghold(81per cent) . It is also confirmable that rural councils have remained ZanuPF’s traditional stronghold, the sole explanation ZanuPF has remained the ruling party in last 38 years to this very day. It is common cause Mugabe manipulated Zec and the rural vote to win the rural vote. It is common cause the new ZanuPF has not discovered new formular for winning the rural vote. It stands to reason the urban electorate is in the circumstance less distortion of Zimbabwe majority sentiment including diaspora, than the rural electorate. Akawhina mfana uyu jekerere. 2/3 majoriity yevamwe iyi yakarambirei muCHIEDZA muma town? Where they managed only 19 per cent mu Chiedza.?! Who really needs their tails down? Clearly beneficiaries of the Mugabe rural vote traditional formula?

  21. is Chamisa going to employ these youths in council. this young man is so lacking in national strategy he is concerned with himself being voted in power and nothing else. If care is not taken against this person the youths will die poor because they are shunning the government programs being enticed by this young man yet he has nothing to deliver for them.

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