Grand coalition must be driven by common cause

via Grand coalition must be driven by common cause – DailyNews Live 18 March 2016

HARARE – The emergence of many opposition political parties in the country is healthy for a democratic society but this should not divide the electorate.

The political parties should work together as a united force to ensure that they can win against Zanu PF, a party currently reeling in dicey and endless factional and succession fights.

In 2008, Simba Makoni’s Mavambo/Kusile/Dawn, garnered eight percent of the vote that denied MDC’s Morgan Tsvangirai outright victory.

Since then, opposition political parties have been mulling a grand coalition against Zanu PF.

But it appears in this noble idea, they face serious challenges of fighting amongst themselves, due to misunderstandings on ideologies.

Some have been quarrelling on who should lead the grand coalition. At the moment, the idea is not about fighting for positions, because what is at stake is bigger than that. In any case, what they agree on far outweighs their differences.

What all these opposition political parties want to achieve is to ensure that President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF is gone and that should act as a guiding principle for now.

The opposition political parties should take advantage of the squabbles that have dismantled Zanu PF.

The governing party, led by a frail 92-year-old Mugabe, is embroiled in deep factional fights that have seen several stalwarts being ejected from the once-strong organisation.

The purged officials have either formed or joined other political parties.

Amid this confusion, it is the only chance that the opposition political parties have that they can capitalise on and reap results.

A divided coalition will not help, as Zanu PF has a lot to its advantage, including State machinery.

Zanu PF can campaign freely without any hindrances, while other opposition political parties are often violently attacked, with certain areas actually declared no-go territories.

Little has been done to bring the perpetrators to book.

The governing party has a monopoly of access to State television and radio stations during campaign periods as well as any other resources necessary which are always at their disposal, putting the opposition political parties at a big disadvantage.

Such circumstances should act as a uniting factor for opposition parties to ensure they fight for one cause.

The 2008 situation should be avoided at all costs because a divided opposition will split the vote, which gives Zanu PF an advantage.

The issue is that the governing party has failed dismally in its entire 36-year reign. They have done nothing for the majority of the people and their welfare.

Millions of people are staring at starvation, with no clue when their next meal will come from. Industries have closed down and unemployment levels have reached unprecedented levels.

There is serious fatigue around the country and the only hope now lies in the coalition of opposition parties.

Thus, these opposition parties should avoid at all cost diving votes if any meaningful change is to be registered in the country.


  • comment-avatar

    governance in africa is generally somewhere between inept feudalism and outright slavery.
    the endless rifts in the opposition are because there is the expectation that whoever comes into power next — well – it will be their turn to eat.
    if the opposition were based on principles, then there could be common ground.
    but it seems to be based more on who will have access to the trough.