By Elizabeth Sitotombe
THE problems bedevilling Nelson Chamisa and his estranged CCC are self-inflicted.
Like the saying goes: ‘You can fool all the people some of the time but you cannot fool all the people all the time.’
When CCC members realised Chamisa’s oratory skills were only hot air, time only served to expose him for the dictator he is while his egocentrism only served to trigger an avalanche that not only buried him but also a coterie of his loyal followers.
This past week, social media was abuzz with news of how Chamisa chickened out of his own party — to the extent even his Western handlers were shocked.
The same cannot be said for the many Zimbabweans who saw it coming.
On France 24, the headline screamed: ‘Zimbabwe’s opposition leader quits own party’. Bloomberg.com wrote: ‘Zimbabwe’s opposition left Rudderless as Leader Chamisa quits’.
Yahoo News UK also wrote: ‘Zimbabwe’s main opposition leader Nelson Chamisa quits own party’.
If he was expecting any sympathy, he was certainly not getting it.
Stephen Chan, Chamisa’s known advisor, clearly shaken by Chamisa’s announcement, wrote: “But it raises big questions on his ability to fight big complex battles. If you are President of Zimbabwe you can’t just [get] up and leave Zimbabwe when the going gets tough. Chamisa used words like ‘contaminated’ and ‘hijacked’ but those things happened on his watch. If those things happened it was he as leader who let them happening. If he had said I screwed up, I must resign, it would have made more sense.
My view is that the opposition MPs should stay in Parliament. They were elected to represent something. Loyalty to their constituents maybe more powerful than loyalty to a leader who at this moment has no plan on his own way forward. Basically, the CCC is in a disunited mess as factions and indeed semi factions head towards a meeting today. It seems unlikely there will be coherence or agreement but a permanently divided opposition. A united ZANU PF will be crowing.”
Chamisa’s handlers and funders have time-and-again expressed their disappointment with Chamisa who failed to dislodge ZANU PF after the clueless leader had sold them false hopes. He simply lacked the ideology to guide the party.
A true leader
A true leader finds a way to solve problems. He/she will influence followers in a positive manner despite challenges. A true leader has vision; he/she knows where he/she is headed and why. He/ she is confident without being arrogant. He/she is always accountable and growth-minded. Above all, he/she is a great communicator.
Now, none of the mentioned attributes can describe Chamisa who had turned himself into a political demigod. He conned his gullible followers into believing he was leading them to the ‘promised land’ and his supporters persevered for naught.
There are rumours Chamisa will form another party with the colour blue being touted on some social media platforms, but to try and salvage what is left of the CCC and morph it into another party is pointless at this time.
After all, Chamisa’s supporters had been deserting en masse after he betrayed many of the old-timers in his bid to centralise power.
MPs defy Chamisa to the end
Fadzayi Mahere, Chamisa‘s staunch follower, chose to resign from Parliament, a position entrusted to her by voters in her constituency, no doubt in a bid to cajole others to follow suit. But by the end of the day, there was a deafening silence from the other CCC MPs.
They had no intention of following Chamisa like flies that follow a corpse into the grave.
Marondera MP Caston Matewu decided to pledge his loyalty to the CCC faction instead and announced he would not resign. Even the MDC founder Morgan Tsvangirai’s son Richard Tsvangirai, who is MP for Norton Constituency, declared he would remain in the party as his constituents had pleaded with him not to resign. Clearly, he (Chamisa) overestimated his power and influence.
Last year, Chamisa had ordered his MPs to disengage from Parliament following recalls by Sengezo Tshabangu but they defied him.
In 2022, the MPs defied Chamisa once again when he directed them to reject a US$40 000 loan facility from Parliament.
The CCC Citizens National Assembly announced it had resolved that all CCC MPs stay in Parliament, leaving Mahere out in the cold. Furthermore, a committee led by Jameson Timba would engage Chamisa on his resignation.
Meanwhile, in an unexpected turn of events, Job Sikhala is out of prison after he and Chitungwiza North MP Godfrey Sithole were sentenced to a wholly suspended two-year sentence by Harare Magistrate Tafadzwa Miti, on January 30. Sikhala had time-and-again accused his leader of throwing him under the bus and sacrificing him for his own political mileage while in prison because he feared for his position.
When asked if he will succeed Chamisa, Sikhala said:“The biggest deployers of any role in politics are the people. I will listen to the people.”
Interesting times ahead!