Leader of Transform Zimbabwe, Jacob Ngarivhume, believes that defeating Zanu PF requires collective action by Zimbabweans, urging a shift away from reliance on individual politicians and emphasising better coordination within the opposition.
Ngarivhume said politics in Zimbabwe has to move away from individuals and personalities but people must act collectively as Zanu PF was more “coordinated in persecuting people.”
“As young people, we must take charge and control our situation. There comes a point in politics where we have to move and gravitate from individuals and personalities. The struggle has to be collectively owned by Zimbabweans,” he said during This Morning on Asakhe, an X space hosted by CITE on Tuesday.
When politicians fail to deliver, ordinary citizens must take control and take charge of the situation, according to the opposition leader.
“This is exactly the space and time we are in as Zimbabwe. Our politics has to move away from the Chamisas, Ngarivhumes and Mnangagwas but has to be collectively owned,” he said, giving an example of the recently presented national budget that citizens could collectively question.
“Look at the tax increases, these people, despite all the resources in this country, still have the audacity to milk people who are bleeding blood. That has to be rejected and that rejection has to be done collectively as a people. Even if it means we have to fill the streets and demand an end to the corruption in this country.”
Ngarivhume said it was up to people to question and interrogate what was happening in Zimbabwe.
“None but ourselves can free ourselves as Zimbabweans. This is what Transform Zimbabwe strongly feels,” he said.
During his eight-month prison sentence, the opposition leader said he had time to reflect on the need for the opposition to be more organised than the ruling Zanu PF.
“We need a well-coordinated response to what is happening in the country. The enemy, the Zanu PF regime is well-coordinated in persecuting people. They have captured the courts. They know that you will not escape the courts. They have captured prison officers in our prisons and they know you will be quite in trouble when in prison. They are well-coordinated and well-oiled and this is the kind of coordination that we need. The opposition needs two times that coordination,” Ngarivhume noted.
He called for a shared vision in Zimbabwe, urging the opposition to unite and find common ground to fight against a regime that ignores the people’s voices. Ngarivhume stressed the importance of Zimbabweans taking initiative rather than waiting for external intervention.
Ngarivhume also said people needed to support each other, especially when political activists were arrested.
“When I was in prison, I would get to spend a day with Job Sikhala when we appeared at the High Court and recently when I saw him at Magistrates Court, I told him I was not going to answer on the support he has received from the CCC. I am not going to speak on his behalf even if he has discussed with me but support is critical and sends a message to the regime,” he said.
“I had lawyers visiting me, leaders from other parties and I would appreciate that. But we have those who don’t want to take up that space. I am not sure why that would happen.”
Ngarivhume claimed when he was released from prison, he raised awareness about the jailed Mthwakazi Republic Party (MRP) members for solidarity.
“I informed my information team, I spoke to ZINASU because we need that solidarity. As you grow, you realise people are so much afraid of many things. They want to occupy that space alone (saying) ‘that space must be occupied by me and is mine alone.’ That is selfishness. In the struggle, you need to stand up for another,” said Ngarivhume.
“We must speak up for Sikhala and the Mthwakazi people. You can’t be arrested and we say nothing. The oppressor looks at that. The strong support sends a strong message. That’s the kind of thing they look at. Sikhala goes back to the Magistrates Court in Harare on January 24, 2024 and we need to be there.”