Tsvangirai’s womanising, does it matter?


Yes. Not really? Who cares?

That was the result of an unscientific online survey by The Insider which asked its readers:

  • Women say Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s womanising is likely to cost him votes from women in the next elections.
  • Men say it could in fact get him more votes because he has shown that he is a real man (Murume chaiye).
  • Who do you think is right?

Nearly 40 percent (39.9%) of those who voted said womanising was going to cost Tsvangirai votes from women in the next election.

There are more women than men in Zimbabwe and this implies that there are more women voters than men.

The women’s leagues of political parties are also usually more powerful within the parties but the women tend to vote for men rather than their female colleagues.

Just over 30 percent (30.4%) said the womanising could actually gain him votes because he had demonstrated he was a real man.

Those who did not agree with the two assumptions constituted nearly 30 percent (29.7 percent).

It is not clear how much of the current public opinion the poll reflects but there has been a media frenzy in the West that Tsvangirai is likely to lose because of his womanising and loss of credibility but the pro-ZANU-PF media has been encouraging leaders of ZANU-PF not to take these stories and polls seriously arguing that they may be a ruse to put ZANU-PF off guard.

The Herald quoted a ZANU-PF supporter as saying this was a tactic to try to catch ZANU-PF by surprise and called it “chikuku vata-vata” which lulls an enemy before one springs a surprise.

The United States embassy wrote off an MDC victory in 2008, only to see the party beat ZANU-PF both in the parliamentary and presidential elections.


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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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