THE opposition Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) South Africa (SA) branch on Monday conducted a “go home to vote” campaign march and rally in the neighbouring country as part of its voter mobilisation efforts.
The campaign, aimed at mobilising Zimbabweans to troop back home and register to vote for CCC leader Nelson Chamisa in this year’s polls, was held in Hillbrow, Johannesburg.
Chamisa is viewed as the biggest contender against President Emmerson Mnangagwa who won a disputed election in 2018.
Videos that circulated on social media yesterday showed CCC members carrying placards and flags, while members of the South Africa Police Services (Saps) escorted them.
In the videos, one of the campaigners, who was using a hailer speaker, is heard speaking in Ndebele saying: "Isikhathi sesifikile MaZimbabwean kasambeni siyo vota. Kangene, Kangene umfana. Asambeni siyovota sifuna inguquko" (The time has come Zimbabweans, let us go home to vote. The young man (Chamisa) must come into power. We want change).”
African National Congress (ANC) Hillbrow councillor, who only identified herself as Zanele said some South African leaders were educated in Zimbabwe.
"So we also want our neighbours to have a good life. Therefore, we support the CCC.”
CCC SA spokesperson Ernest Arnold Chinyuke said: "We want to state that the campaign which happened in Hillbrow was not only there, but was all over SA. As CCC, we are encouraging Zimbabweans to go to register to vote. This campaign is inspired by the numbers of Zimbabweans who are in SA. We are close to three million Zimbabweans in SA. Everyone must go back home to vote.”
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"The CCC in every SA district is preparing transport to ferry people to Beitbridge to register to vote. Due to security reasons, we will not disclose when people will be ferried to register to vote.
“The campaign started with 300 plus people, but ended up with over 5 000. It made a very serious impact with people expressing keen interest to register to vote.”
The CCC SA branch is seeking to take advantage of the on-going Zimbabwe Electoral Commission voter registration blitz which will end on March 21.