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Chamisa hints at new party name

Local News
Chamisa’s CCC was thrown into chaos after Sengezo Tshabangu claimed to be the interim secretary-general of the party and recalled its Members of Parliament (MPs) and councillors.

CITIZENS Coalition for Change (CCC) leader, Nelson Chamisa, “plans” to adopt a new party name amid indications that he is losing grip on the opposition movement.

Chamisa’s CCC was thrown into chaos after Sengezo Tshabangu claimed to be the interim secretary-general of the party and recalled its Members of Parliament (MPs) and councillors.

Tshabangu was stopped from recalling more CCC councillors and MPs by the High Court pending finalisation of cases involving the ownership of the opposition movement.

By-elections will be held on February 3 to fill some of the vacant seats.

In December, Zanu PF won seven of the nine contested seats in the first round of by-elections triggered by the recalls.

Chamisa unveiled the CCC in January 2022 after his former ally-turned opponent, Douglas Mwonzora, snatched the MDC Alliance from him.

The MDC Alliance is a coalition of  several political parties in Zimbabwe which saw Chamisa standing as its presidential candidate in the disputed 2018 elections.

Mwonzora went on to claim the MDC name and symbols, leaving Chamisa with no party.

As the battle for the control of the CCC continues, interim deputy spokesperson Gift “Ostallos” Siziba yesterday hinted that Chamisa may emerge as leader of the Democratic Alternative in Zimbabwe (DAZ).

Siziba told NewsDay that Chamisa remains their leader, but was coy on whether they were abandoning the CCC name.

“Our message is to reaffirm our position that was taken in January 2022 that the alternative in Zimbabwe remains, and is led by Chamisa,” Siziba said.

Siziba said a picture he circulated mentioning Chamisa as DAZ leader was meant “to emphasise our message that Chamisa is the face of the alternative movement in Zimbabwe with Chamisa as leader.”

CCC interim spokesperson, Promise Mkwananzi, was also evasive when contacted for comment.

“CCC led by Chamisa is Zimbabwe’s Democratic Alternative. We shall rejoice,” he told NewsDay.

Sources said Chamisa was under pressure to adopt a new name or negotiate with Tshabangu after it emerged that his allies in the CCC were pressuring him to embrace the 2019 MDC structures.

Insiders said Chamisa feared losing control if he adopted the 2019 structures where he had Tendai Biti and Welshman Ncube as his deputies.

Chamisa disbanded the structures after forming the CCC in January 2022.

His loyalists defended him saying this was necessary to prevent infiltration by Zanu PF and State security agents.

Exiled former minister, Walter Mzembi, said Chamisa might run into similar problems if he did not regularise structures after adopting a new party name.

“In a predatory State it doesn’t matter how many times you rebrand or reincarnate until the fundamentals are dealt with you are either prey or predator with a prescribed political market share,” Mzembi commented on X.

Former Information minister, Jonathan Moyo, also commented on plans to adopt DAZ as the new party name.

“THE CAPE OF ‘GOOD HOPE’ AND THE BLUES IN ZIMBABWE: first it was the sub-imperialist, Cecil John Rhodes, who gave Zimbabwe the colonial blues many moons ago from the Cape, through his predatory British South African Company; now it’s John Steenhuisens and his ilk hoping to give Zimbabwe the neocolonial blues, also from the Cape, yet again; this time through some DA something, if, God forbid, it happens,” Moyo wrote on X.

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