I have watched, reported on and participated in the past 10 elections that Zimbabwe has held so far. The 2023 elections due in six weeks are quite different. The lackadaisical attitude of the opposition towards the elections is baffling.
Citizens Coalition for Change leader Nelson Chamisa, despite being the most formidable candidate who could beat current Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front leader Emmerson Mnangagwa, seems to be doing everything to make sure that he loses the elections which are just 73 days away.
He has so far not openly campaigned. He has not disclosed the names of his parliamentary candidates yet nomination is 10 days away. He is only visible on twitter where he says:”This time, its time”.
Rewind to 2018. Chamisa usurped leadership of the Movement for Democratic Change-Alliance within hours of party leader Morgan Tsvangirai’s death in South Africa. By 8 July, he had held 57 rallies and had one more, the final one, in Harare.
Chamisa has been very secretive about his campaign as well as the structure and leadership of the CCC since it was formed in January last year after the Alliance was taken over by Douglas Mwonzora following a Supreme Court ruling that Chamisa’s leadership was null and void.
Only three people are visible within the party, Chamisa himself and his spokesmen, Fadzayi Mahere and Ostallos Siziba.
The party has so far not unveiled its constitution and it is going into the elections before it has been officially launched.
While most media reported the announcement of the new party in January 2022 as its launch, party deputy spokesman Ostallos Siziba said that the party had not been officially launched and would be launched before the 2023 elections.
“Our launch will be a confirmation beyond any doubt that we are new in form, character and strategy,” Siziba told the Standard on 11 December 2022.
“We have been building the alternative from below and now we are satisfied to a greater degree that we are ready to unleash the citizens’ potential in a bid to win Zimbabwe for change. We have built networks domestically with key players and internationally we have made our case beyond any doubt. We have had to build our electoral infrastructure to the level and extent that we got 61% of the total by-election outcome.”
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