Nelson Chamisa’s plan to rebuild Zimbabwe in his own words


In a few months, Zimbabweans head to the polls to decide on their future.

There have been many elections before, all of which have not brought the change we desire. So, I understand why, for many of our people, voting may seem like a futile exercise. However, history tells us that nothing lasts forever. We have reason to be confident that this is a special year, one in which millions of our people will cast the liberation vote, a freedom vote, and a restoration vote.

The odds are stacked against us. Yet, moving around the country, and speaking to people across all sectors of society, I am encouraged by their resolve to make sure that this will be the year of our national rebirth. Since we announced our new movement on 24 January 2022, it has grown beyond all expectations. Ours is a citizens’ movement that draws on the glorious history of the liberation struggle and those that came before us-our forebears.

The struggle for our liberation was indeed a citizens’ movement, with its roots in the mass movements and unions led by luminaries such as Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo and Benjamin Burombo. Today, the liberation agenda has been either abandoned, checked halfway and utterly bastardised. It is our duty to reclaim and restore that liberation legacy and preserve it.

Recently, I laid out the Zimbabwe agenda for what a Citizens’ government will do, when the voters and citizens accord us a clear and clean mandate. This agenda was not crafted by a few elites in a boardroom. It came from listening to citizens, and their wishes for a better Zimbabwe.

Our agenda for a New Great Zimbabwe comes from the working people who are struggling to feed their families and the students who are worried about their future. It is about the mothers giving birth in hospitals with no lighting or basic medicines, and the farmers who are not being paid enough for their hard work.

Our agenda for a New Great Zimbabwe has been inspired by pensioners with nothing to show for their years of service, and the war veterans living in poverty in a land they fought for. We stand for the professionals whose only dream is to leave the country, and the businesses that are struggling to stay afloat because of poor leadership. In building our agenda for a New Great Zimbabwe, we began by building firm grassroots programmes, all led by citizens on the ground.

Our Citizens Change Volunteers programme is recruiting new voters for change. As they do this, they are listening to communities. This is informing our community assistance strategy, which aims to provide targeted support for the most vulnerable.

Our new democratic community consensus candidate selection process is structured from the ground up, because our citizens and communities know their leaders. It pivots from the philosophy and principle that places the citizens at centre , citizens first-CITIZENOCRACY.

The young people in the Citizens movement have come up with the “Register, Elect and Protect” campaign (REAP), to encourage more youths to register to vote and take charge of their future.

The Women For Change campaign is speaking to women across the country to vote for a new Zimbabwe that affords them equal opportunity.

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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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