ED, Chamisa play hide and seek

SEEKING DIVINE INTERVENTION … MDC leader Nelson Chamisa praying at a strategic national dialogue meeting in Harare yesterday

BY BLESSED MHLANGA

BITTER political rivals, President Emmerson Mnangagwa and MDC’s Nelson Chamisa, again failed to meet face to face at a strategic national dialogue meeting convened by the Zimbabwe Council of Churches in Harare yesterday as the two leaders adopted hardline positions to talks.

Zimbabwe churches are seeking to broker talks between Mnangagwa and the MDC leader which would lay the basis for the recovery of an economy struggling from shortages of cash, fuel, medicine and some basic commodities including bread.

Disputed elections last year deepened the economic malaise, while a security crackdown on post-election protests in August and another ruthless suppression of demonstrations against fuel price increases of 150% last month drew comparisons with the dark days of former President Robert Mugabe’s regime.

Mnangagwa skipped yesterday’s prayer meeting after initially indicating that he would attend. He was instead represented by Defence minister Oppah Muchinguri.

Chamisa, who snubbed a meeting called by Mnangagwa at State House on Wednesday to discuss an agenda for talks aimed at tackling Zimbabwe’s crisis, attended and told the gathering that any talks without the MDC Alliance, would not solve the political crisis, which he said was at the centre of the current economic meltdown.

“I can assure you that there can be dialogue by any other party, but that dialogue will not resolve our issues because it’s a matter of what is the dispute. The dispute is a matter of the electoral result that was disputed. That electoral result that was disputed was not disputed by some of the political parties that are in agreement with President Mnangagwa. I disagreed with President Mnangagwa,” Chamisa said.

He told church leaders that he snubbed Wednesday’s talks because the convenor was not independent.

“Some would say, but Chamisa why didn’t you go to State House yesterday (Wednesday)? For a good reason, if we have to dialogue, we need an independent, respected and credible mediator between us. The church in this case is an appropriate convener,” Chamisa said to applause.

The MDC has maintained that unity and political stability will not be resolved unless the issue of Mnangagwa’s legitimacy is resolved. Chamisa’s dispute of the July 30 2018 electoral results has been backed by the European Union and Commonwealth elections observer reports which said the results were not traceable or verifiable.

“It should not be difficult for me to sit and meet with President Mnangagwa, and I am saying President not because our dispute has been resolved. He is president of his organisation, I am president of my organisation, so until that issue is resolved it becomes difficult for us to move things forward,” Chamisa said.


“I would have wanted him to be here. I have been ready yesterday, last year, I am ready today, tomorrow, the next hour if there is a room even at this hotel to meet with President Mnangagwa to resolve the issues affecting the people of Zimbabwe, because any minute longer is a life wasted, it’s time wasted.”

He added: “The bishops have acknowledged the source of the problem. The fundamental problem is that we need healing, we need peace, we need unity. We need to have a coming together of people and for that to happen, there has to be President Mnangagwa and myself.”

Mnangagwa, who was supposed to attend the prayer meeting, was represented by Muchinguri, who delivered a speech on his behalf.

The Zanu PF leader did not acknowledge the role of the church in leading the dialogue, but instead said the church should pray for peace and leadership in the country. Mnangagwa, in his speech, said the turbulence “was only temporary”.

“Therefore, the starting point and exception is that we must love ourselves, and our God-given country as a united people with a common destiny, government further perceives the church as the light that never wants, that guides our nation towards hope, optimism and a positive expectation,” he said.

Both Mnangagwa and Chamisa quoted from the same scripture as they concluded their speeches, calling on each other to repent from their wickedness.

“The healing of our nation rests in the prayers and supplications of the church for 2 Chronicles 2 verse 14 says: ‘if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land’,” Mnangagwa’s speech read.

Speaking after the meeting, Information deputy minister Energy Mutodi said Zanu PF and Mnangagwa did not need the current talks because they won the elections, but had only convened dialogue at the behest of Chamisa and his party.

“We don’t need that dialogue, we have not called for that dialogue in the first place, the opposition MDC is the one that has been petitioning the President to call all political parties for dialogue and this is the call that the President has replied,” he said.

Zion Christian Church leader Nehemiah Mutendi called on Chamisa and Mnangagwa to put aside their egos and put the nation forward.

He said they should take a leaf from Mugabe and the late MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai who despite massive differences met and found a solution following a disputed 2008 poll, culminating in the formation of a unity government.

Meanwhile, political leaders who attended Wednesday’s meeting of presidential candidates who ran in the July 30 harmonised elections last year reportedly left the preparatory meeting more confused than they arrived with no binding decisions having been made.

Political leaders including Daniel Shumba, Divine Mhambi Hove of National Alliance of Patriotic and Democratic Republicans said the meeting was a shambles, did not have an agenda and left more questions unanswered and with a way forward generally unclear.

Shumba, a former Mnangagwa close ally and ex-Zanu PF parliamentarian, had no kind words for the meeting, saying he had no confidence in what had appeared to be a door into closing political instability in the country.

“A disappointingly unstructured discussion, which had no agenda nor outline. The moderator, Retired Justice Selo Nare (National Healing and Reconciliation Commission chairperson) was out of his depth as he failed to grasp issues and was not in control,” Shumba said.

“I have never seen so many cheerleaders with the exception of Nkosana Moyo, Noah Manyika and myself who spoke to the issues well, the issues which include human rights violations, the role of the military in civilian life and the electoral process. In short, I have no confidence in the process.”

Hove said the meeting was a platform for opposition leaders who cheered on the government with the exception of Shumba and Moyo.

“I must say Thokozani Khupe, Lovemore Madhuku were the first speakers on the panel and they came in with a tone of really forging forward with dialogue,” he said.

“Then came Shumba with strong words, talking about dissatisfaction and how people had to be genuine if talks are to work and how the army is ravaging the community.”

In the back and forth that characterised the meeting, Hove said there was agreement for need to dialogue, but the objectives and targets of what needed to be discussed remained elusive.

Build Zimbabwe Alliance leader Noah Manyika said the meeting was successful only in the sense that he was able to tell Mnangagwa directly what he thinks.

Mutodi said the talks were mainly to discuss the economic fortunes of the country, how sanctions can be dealt with and how Zimbabwe can get back on its feet.

He added that the Zanu PF government will not tolerate any talks about the legitimacy of Mnangagwa’s victory nor would they seek to revisit an issue closed by the ruling of the Constitutional Court.

“We are not going to have negotiations to determine the outcome of the elections. We are not going to have negotiations to determine who is legitimate and who is not legitimate, the issue of legitimacy has been solved by the people through the ballot,” he said.

10 Comments

  1. How much is much!

    For their information, Zimbabwe is bigger than both Mnangagwa and Chamisa and will never succumb to defeatism .

    Spare us ” Venezuela’s Maduro/Guaido ” political circus as Zimbabwe will never be grounded under our (electorate) watch.

    The two of you must shape up or ship out!

  2. shunguhadziurayi mangarayi

    Chamisa’s language is an insult to us who voted for our President ED. If chamisa respects only those who voted for him then he dont deserve to be anywhere near leadership door. Chamisa is insulting us on a daily basis by continuing talking about ED’s legitimacy. It is not a secret even to the silly trump that ZANU PF commands the majority followers. Why should chamisa think we could vote for MPs and refuse our President whom we endorsed on the Extra ordinary Congress? How can someone dreaming to be a President of this country want to use this divide and rule amongst the electorate? After all his party has been thumped since its formation, and why does he think he could win this time? Because he had rigged to have 2.6 million voters which those he had paid money to do the job failed to accomplish because of the overwhelming support for ED. Very soon he will be out favor from those few who voted him, because of his arrogance.

  3. No need to talk lets leave zanu finish itself ,Chamisa must not even come near or work with zanu he risk being poisoned .Everybody sane knows zanu is heading noway hence we must leave this party alone .Poverty sometimes confuses pple so that they rush into doing stupid things like talks thinking what happened between Robert and Mugabe is going to happen so desperate .Problem is zanu and when the situation is ok pple will stand up and get rid of this party and the problem will varnish from this country .

  4. Comment…varikuguta thats y vasingaite serious.kubvongodza muto kuita kweakaguta

  5. Even those who foolishly voted for zanu and ED now see that they wasted their votes as suffer continue so angry are zanu supporters as they have become laughing stokes everywhere in the country and across the world .Judging by what happened in the country 2 weeks ago zanu is living very dangerously hence no one now wants to be party of it just go out there you will never see anyone putting on ED t shirt now why ? Because zanu is rotten and very unpopular .

  6. We, proper supporters of Ed have never believed our president could perfom miracles with the economy and most of us are wise enough to understand the meaning, implications and benefits of austerity. You should infact be worried about liar Nelson who lied about President Donald Trump of Us promissing him 15 billion dollars in the event of him winning elections. Mwana wemutema kupiwa mari yakawanda kudaro nemurungu kuti udye iwe wakarara zvakamboitika kupi uye riini? Let us use our brains properly and learn to respect lawful authority please. Zimbabweans need to work hard for prosperity and shun the culture of borrowing for survival. Zimbabwe can only have one government at a time and let us respect those who currently lead us and give them the benefit of doubt while waiting patiently for the results of their current effort. Remember Rome not built in a day.

  7. Taking a snapshot of what is happening in Zimbabwe, one would not be dump enough not to want to dialogue. The issue of egocentric leaders, those who do not even care about the general populace is what is at play here. Chamisa summed it up so well in his flogging of his nemesis, Mnangagwa when he said, Zimbabweans were not the ones causing their sufferings but the politicians. It has been pointed out in many ways that Zimbabwe lacks political will to present a meaningful change to the lives of ordinary Zimbabweans. Politicians are busy creating a fertile ground for their selfish desire to either keep power or wrest it. The circus we are currently seeing is a combination of greed, myopic political gestures, let them do it, let them fix the economy as well as the notion, we are formidable because we are THE PEOPLE’S CHOICE. The question that all of them do not even want to ask themselves is what people are benefiting from their bickering. All of the two parties are busy trying to gain their interests not that of the Zimbabweans. They continue to want to use us against each other when they very well know that both of them are not anywhere near being for the people.

    Time has come for us Zimbabweans from both quarters to show these goons that our lives are more important than their bickering and power struggles. We refuse to be used by people that have no heart for the common Zimbabweans. We refuse to be used against each other while they eat and drink from spoils purportedly gained from them falsely representing our interests. We refuse to acknowledge both of them as bonafide leaders of different groupings of our people. They represent themselves and their interests period.
    Who does not want to live well in our country so full of resources? Who stands for leaders that are causing us to be poor when we are rich? Who will stand by people that are heartless to such an extend as to want to kill the very same people they should protect? We are sick and tired of this rot. We can not take it any more. A new Zimbabwean movement by the people, of the people is brewing up. We have lost confidence in the two supposedly major political parties to an extend that we are going to be doing all that we can to extricate ourselves from the ZANU and MDC quagmire. This is what is going to happen in the shortest possible time, that people are simply going to raise among themselves a party and its leader who will blow into oblivion the present parties.
    Someone, I mean someone should take up the position and fill the gap why these foolish establishments are busy at it. Someone is rising up among the population who is going to take Zimbabwe to the promised land. The two political parties and some smaller ones who unfortunately also think small, shall be rendered useless befitting their statuses. Both Parties have become enemies of the people and do not even have the mandate to govern them.

    Zanu PF is not God neither MDC. You can quote the revered scriptures that lacks application on your part for nothing but your own demise. The two institutions are failing their relevance dismally. They want to fight, so lets leave them to it and show them that they are just people like ourselves. Infact, we are better because we have morals to defend and a future to institute in the generation to come. Our children are being affected everyday by issues that have nothing to do with them. They are going to school but teachers are failing to deliver due to incapacitation of different kinds. Where are we going? In the meantime their children are learning outside the country and are protected from these challenges caused by politicians. We have woken up from the slumber, we are now wide awake and we know whats good for us. Its us the people who shall liberate ourselves. MDC and ZANU PF are slowing sentencing themselves to the gallows because of their unrepentant attitudes. Long live the people of Zimbabwe. Long live children of Munhumutapa.

  8. We have always wished ZANU PF to devour itself and leave power and that has never happened for nearly 4 decades, and it seems it wont happen anytime soon. No wonder why they say ZANU PF was created by GOD to rule us, and ukavenga ZANU PF ucharwadziwa nekusingaperi usingapori. Ini ndakatosiyana nazvo, ndavakutoifarira kuti ndipore and pari zvine ndave kunzwa zviri nani

  9. I like the Chamisa photo
    ‘Bhuruka bhuruka mweya unoera ndinoda kuenda newe’
    sang Baba Charamba.

    In the other photo in NewZimbabwe.con, Chamisa goes

    ‘Bruuuuuh, habhurakadha habhurakada haparatata haparatata me wants power, Bruuuuuuh, 1,2 3 baba ndinode simba rekutonga bruuuh AMEn halleluhah

  10. ZANU is collapsing very fast some few cio trying to hood wink us here know it very well that ED is not a leader and will never solve our problems never in 1000 times and he is in serious trouble he is going exactly the Mugabe route . Very soon we are going to see more fights within the dying party and then ED will be removed . If anyone does not foresee that he or she must be mentally impaired .

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