Judge for yourself: Transcript of BBC Hardtalk interview with Nelson Chamisa


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Sackur: Well you make it all sound so simple The Chronicle newspaper in Bulawayo and Bulawayo of course is a stronghold of the opposition in Zimbabwe. The editorial in that paper said “we are appalled by Chamisa’s lust for power and disrespect he’s showing to his leader by angling for his position just a day after his death.”

Chamisa: Well they must be appalled because they are rooting for the ruling party. They support the ruling party. They would want to see the opposition in disarray. They would want to see us in sixes and sevens. We have not given them the chance. What we want to have in Zimbabwe is to have Zimbabweans having a real chance to fight for democracy, to have an alternative and to have the best of a new order.

Sackur: But there’s disarray, that’s the problem. There’s disarray because by the time of his death Morgan Tsvangirai had three different deputies of whom you were one. But one of the others who was a long-standing vice president of the party Thoko Khupe she was so infuriated by your grab for the reins of power that she refused to accept it  and now she’s running as an alternative MDC leader with her own team, her platform with the determination to destroy you.

Chamisa: The beauty about democracy is that we must have more, the merrier and the fact that she has decided to walk away is actually something that is regrettable but something that has not shaken the base.

Sackur: You say we wanted to avoid disarray, you haven’t avoided disarray, have you?  In fact you have made the chaos inside your party something of a standing joke?

Chamisa: We are the most popular, you go across the whole country in Zimbabwe, the mood is just electric. The electricity, the momentum is unbelievable.

Sackur: Well, we will talk about that, your message, how it’s being received in your country but let’s just for a moment longer stick with the politics of your party. You say it was all constitutional we did it by the book?

Chamisa: Indeed.

Continued next page

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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.

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