THE audacious attempts last week by beleaguered former CCC ‘leader’ Nelson Chamisa to smuggle himself into Government had nothing to do with his feigned love for the country but were a last ditch resort to cushion himself from what inevitably turned to be an unavoidable implosion of his party.
He has since ‘quit’ his party, citing the now routine but largely untested ‘infiltration’ and ‘sabotage’ by ZANU PF.
Chamisa, who was under relentless pressure from his party officials over his alleged dictatorial tendencies, last week claimed ZANU PF ‘hardliners’ were blocking him from meeting with President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
Confirming the widely held view about Chamisa’s murky leadership and ‘strategic ambiguity’, most of his party officials only learnt of his decision to abandon ship through the social media.
The then CCC had said talks with President Mnangagwa would solve the ‘legitimacy’ crisis in the country, among other unnamed issues.
It has emerged that Chamisa wanted to arm himself with the ‘talks’ to purge his internal rivals.
But officials in his former party dismissed his assertions that he wanted to hold talks with President Mnangagwa to ‘save’ the country, saying their leader saw alignment with ZANU PF as an escape route from issues confronting his former party.
The officials constantly demanded accountability but that fell on deaf ears and now they want him to furnish the nation with how he managed party resources from donors — mainly Western donors.
Chamisa received US$5 million from Western donors on the eve of the August 23 harmonised general elections but the majority of that funding never found its way into the party coffers.
Now his allies say he was seeking to use ‘talks’ with President Mnangagwa to consolidate his precarious position in the opposition party and to purge his rivals including vice-president, and Uncle Sam’s favourite, Tendai Biti, former secretary-general Charlton Hwende, Harare Mayor Jacob Mafume, Welshman Ncube and several others who were backing the marauding interim secretary-general Sengezo Tshabangu who had been on a party ‘cleansing’ exercise.
As such, the officials maintained, the real issue with Chamisa was that he was frantically trying to divert attention from his self-inflicted woes through his fallacious claims that he was being blocked from having an audience with President Mnangagwa.
But one of the reasons he cited for his departure from CCC was the now tired claim that one of his fiercest opponents, Tshabangu, whom he said was a ‘certified fraudster’, was being sponsored by ZANU PF to destabilise the opposition party.
However, information gathered by this publication, which first revealed the chaos in the CCC, indicates otherwise.
As was the case in the MDC-A, Chamisa never wanted anyone from CCC to take the limelight away from him.
We can exclusively reveal that, for instance, his foiled attempt to recall Mafume, who is reportedly aligned to Biti, was part of his late bid to launch a fightback against his rivals.
A fortnight ago, Chamisa sought but failed to pull a fast one on Mafume during nominations for new Harare Mayor when he personally tried to preside over the selection process to replace the ousted Harare Mayor Ian Makone, who had been recalled by Tshabangu.
Chamisa, information gathered by this publication shows, told Mafume — who was also eyeing the post — to nominate Makone, claiming that Mafume would be nominated by others as he tried to push for his favourite Makone to continue as Harare Mayor — but that failed.
Opposition parties in the country have previously used local authorities as cash cows to generate money through illegal sale of stands, among other abuses of office.
Chamisa then tried to recall Mafume whom he claims is pro-Government.
His close allies said he was miffed by the limelight that Mafume is ‘enjoying’.
Mafume has been working hand-in-glove with Government to combat the cholera pandemic wrought by CCC’s gross incompetence at Town House.
The Harare Mayor has also embarked on an initiative to revive the capital’s waning fortunes in sharp contrast to Chamisa’s ‘Jecha’ strategy which revolves around sabotaging the country’s economy, paving the way for his unlikely entrance into the State House.
While all this drama has unnecessarily kept the country in perpetual election mode, with by elections becoming the order of the day, Chamisa and his cohorts have failed to convince the nation that Tshabangu is a ZANU PF plant.
Chamisa had also been facing pressure from the opposition’s fervent backers, the US, that want him to step down for Biti.
Despite having tried to help him parrot the ‘rigging’ narrative in the aftermath of the August 23 2023 elections, where he was mauled by President Mnangagwa, Uncle Sam, sources said, does not believe he has the gravitas to push ZANU PF from power.
The US ably backed their point person, SADC EOM chairperson Nevers Mumba, to author a report that criticised those polls.
His close ally, and deputy spokesperson, Gift Ostallos Siziba hinted, on January 16, that his leader is likely to form another party, Democratic Alternative in Zimbabwe (DAZ).
His departure from CCC on January 25 has since confirmed that.
That and his relentless pursuit for talks with President Mnangagwa, his officials said, were largely seen a last resort to his faltering political career.
While such engagements are necessary for any nation in order to forge unity, peace and development, the problem with the whole issue is Chamisa’s nauseating grandstanding.
Publicly, he attacks President Mnangagwa, the person he intends to hold those talks with, derisively calling him ‘Mr’ for a measly pat on the back from his excitable supporters, but behind the scenes he makes frantic efforts to engage the same.
The problems confronting Chamisa were just that, intra-party problems, which have nothing to do with the country.
As such, he cannot nationalise his problems.
They are his personal issues which apparently confirm how inept a leader he has become.
In essence, Chamisa does not add any value to national development.
His failure to turn around the fortunes of local authorities which are controlled by his party aptly buttresses this point.
But ZANU PF is not taking his claims that hardliners are blocking him from meeting the President lightly.
And the ruling Party should not rescue him from his woes.
“A simple congratulatory message is the magic wand to all the hopes and ambitions of Nelson Chamisa. The sticking sore thumb is the gripping of Chamisa, all that for self-serving narcissism and unruly lust for apex national power,” ZANU PF National Spokesperson, Ambassador Christopher Mutsvangwa told The Herald on Tuesday last week.
“It is plainly churlish for him to seek dialogue as a back door entry to national political legitimacy outside of the ambit of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission, the duly instituted electoral body.
He should eschew his wish for ZANU PF to be visited by internecine fights that are afflicting his benighted CCC. ZANU PF hardliners are an escapist figment of his tortured political soul. Chamisa should finally wake up and dial up the congratulatory message sticking in his political throat.
And he should strive to breed unity and love within CCC rather than moonlight as a spokesperson for an imagined ZANU PF hardline faction.”
If Chamisa is indeed genuinely interested in engaging with the country’s leadership to forge unity and development, he should shed off his childish, excitable tendencies and, like others, follow the proper channels.
The country’s leaders must, in the meantime, never waste their precious time babysitting a chequered character seeking salvation from the same people he lambasts everyday!