Dirty tricks – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary

Source: Dirty tricks – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 25th September 2021


Nelson Chamisa’s MDC Alliance has accused Zanu PF and the Central Intelligence Organisation of hi-jacking his party’s proposed new name and registering it under the name of an obscure politician Varaidzo Musungo.

MDC Alliance spokesperson Fadzayi Mahere said: ‘We have witnessed an unprecedented attempt to decapacitate the main opposition by Zanu PF and its proxies. We expect more: the use of puppet political parties, the violation of democratic freedoms and the abuse of the legal system. Yet we remain unshaken.’ (See: https://www.timeslive.co.za/news/africa/2021-09-21-trickery-will-not-stand-in-our-way-says-zim-opposition-party-with-a-big-idea/.)

The latest Zanu PF move comes after the leader of the MDC T faction Douglas Mwonzora, who is favoured by the government, announced that he would contest the 2023 elections under the name of Chamisa’s MDC Alliance. Mwonzora is a leading figure in POLAD, a government body dismissed by Chamisa as a Zanu PF ‘cheerleaders’ club’.

Chamisa’s party has recently been trying out their proposed new name Citizens’ Convergence for Change (CCC), along with ‘Chamisa Chete Chete’, a ChiShona phrase that means Chamisa only. Interestingly, the name was suggested by former Zanu PF politburo member Jonathan Moyo, now in exile, and a supporter of Chamisa.

He said: ‘The hullabaloo over the purported registration of the Citizens Convergence for Change (CCC) is a farce which exposes the bizarre copycat politics that has gripped the jittery Zanu PF securocrats in the CIO who are dazed by the infectious power of CCC as rallying call for the unity of citizens across the political divide. What exposes the farce even more is that political parties in Zimbabwe are not subject to registration, and hence there’s no law for such registration and, in any event, ZEC is not a registrar of political parties.

‘For the avoidance of doubt, an idea belongs to whoever conceptualises it and uses it first and does so in public, in an organised and documented fashion. Only people from Mars do not know that CCC is the intellectual property of the MDC Alliance and has been in existence for far much longer than September 8, 2021 when the Zanu PF and CIO copycats plagiarised the idea.’ (See: https://www.newsday.co.zw/2021/09/zanu-pf-hijacks-chamisa-project/.)

Chamisa’s supporters are confident they can win the next elections. The Vigil is more anxious, seeing the persistent attempts to rig elections in Africa and this week witnessing the rigged election in Russia, where President Putin was declared to have won an unlikely landslide victory in parliamentary elections. (See: http://www.zimvigil.co.uk/vigil-news/campaign-news/1169-russian-election-2021-putins-united-russia-clings-on-to-supermajority). Many people believe that the opposition in Zimbabwe must, if necessary, boycott the next elections if they are not seen as free and fair.

Other Points:

  • Zanu PF in the UK has been more subdued since their leader Nick Mangwana joined the Mnangagwa’s government as spokesman. But the comrades are still meeting and very excited at the possibility of Mnangagwa visiting the UK for the World Climate Conference in November. We doubt they will ask Mnangagwa why he has allowed careless deforestation in Zimbabwe and other abuses of the environment such as inappropriate development on wetlands. These are some of the points the Vigil will make if we can confront Mnangagwa at the Glasgow conference.
  • Gold dealer Pedzisayi Scott Sakupwanya is obviously doing quite well. He paid US$10,000 for a $5 dollar copy of Zanu PF’s new political booklet at a dinner in Kwekwe attended by cabinet ministers. The wealthy gold merchant wasn’t even there, sending an aide to bid for the booklet at an auction (see: https://www.newzimbabwe.com/controversial-gold-buyer-splurges-us10k-on-zanu-pf-booklet/.)
  • Today we met outside the Zimbabwe Embassy. For the moment we are meeting outside the Embassy every other week and our next gathering will be on 9th October 2021 – at this Vigil we will also mark our 19th anniversary.  On the alternate Saturdays we will continue with the virtual Vigil. However, it was agreed that because we are now able to meet physically and the Vigil is about making the effort to join together in protest, it is not appropriate to continue the virtual Vigils in the same way as they were conducted when we weren’t able to meet. To be recorded as participating in a virtual Vigil your photo, taken with a poster with a message reflecting the situation in Zimbabwe, must be taken at one of the actual Vigils. There will be a small charge to cover admin costs, the ongoing upkeep of the Vigil and our support for the human rights work of ROHR, our sister organisation in Zimbabwe. The photos will then be labelled with your name, uploaded on our website, Flickr site and Facebook pages.
  • Thanks to those who came early today to help set up: Patience Chimba, Delice Gavazah, Babula Gwatiringa, Deborah Harry, Junior Madzimure, Dambudzo Marimira, Amina Matewele, Joyce Mbairatsunga, Dudzai Mukondorongwe, Margaret Munenge, Casper Nyamakura and Kevin Wheeldon. Thanks to Deborah and Margaret for looking after the front table; to Kevin, Joyce , Babula and Junior for handing out flyers; to Delice and Margaret for drumming and to Casper and Jonathan Kariwo for photos. Others who attended were: Rose Benton, Anna Chikoti, Philip Maponga, Beverley Mutandiro and Ephraim Tapa. Photos of today’s Vigil can be accessed here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/albums/72157719913553236.
  • For photos of today’s ROHR meeting, check: https://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/albums/72157719920430377.
  • For all Vigil pictures check: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/. Please note: Vigil photos can only be downloaded from our Flickr website.


Events and Notices:

  • The next Vigil and the Vigil’s 19th Anniversary. Saturday 9th October from 2 – 5 pm outside the Zimbabwe Embassy in London.
  • ROHR Bi-annual Conference. Saturday 23rd October. Among agenda items is 1) leadership renewal, 2) 2022 activity calendar, 3) immigration matters and 4) campaign strategy.
  • The Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR) is the Vigil’s partner organisation based in Zimbabwe. ROHR grew out of the need for the Vigil to have an organisation on the ground in Zimbabwe which reflected the Vigil’s mission statement in a practical way. ROHR in the UK actively fundraises through membership subscriptions, events, sales etc to support the activities of ROHR in Zimbabwe. Please note that the official website of ROHR Zimbabwe is http://www.rohrzimbabwe.org/. Any other website claiming to be the official website of ROHR in no way represents us.
  • The Vigil’s book ‘Zimbabwe Emergency’ is based on our weekly diaries. It records how events in Zimbabwe have unfolded as seen by the diaspora in the UK. It chronicles the economic disintegration, violence, growing oppression and political manoeuvring – and the tragic human cost involved. It is available at the Vigil. All proceeds go to the Vigil and our sister organisation the Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe’s work in Zimbabwe. The book is also available from Amazon.
  • Facebook pages:  

Vigil: https://www.facebook.com/zimbabwevigil

ROHR: https://www.facebook.com/Restoration-of-Human-Rights-ROHR-Zimbabwe-International-370825706588551/

ZAF: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Zimbabwe-Action-Forum-ZAF/490257051027515