Opposition bickering spells doom for change

The past two weeks have all but shown that getting opposition political parties to form a coalition ahead of the next elections may not be possible, with the re-emergence of grandstanding and unhelpful rhetoric. NEWSDAY COMMENT

Source: Opposition bickering spells doom for change – NewsDay Zimbabwe October 25, 2016

All parties have a right to say they think their leaders are the best candidates to lead the envisaged coalition, but the manner it is being done shows that these opposition parties are further apart than can ever be imagined.

MDC-T deputy president, Nelson Chamisa recently said his party leader, Morgan Tsvangirai was the natural leader to lead the coalition, while Zimbabwe People First official, Dzikamai Mavhaire said his leader, Joice Mujuru is the ultimate coalition leader.

These are not off-the-cuff statements, but rather they reveal a cold and calculating political machinery, where opposition parties are developing a hard-line stance of either it being their way or the high way.

It is important to point out that neither Mujuru nor Tsvangirai are God-ordained to lead the opposition.

That Tsvangirai has “travelled with the people for 17 years”, as Chamisa says, does not give him a monopoly over the opposition.

Such statements only poison relations between the parties, create mistrust and ultimately will lead to the stillbirth of a coalition – that many see as the only hope to drag Zimbabwe out of this mess.

Mavhaire’s statements are infantile to say the least and are definitely not meant to build, as his party slogan says, but rather to destroy relations with the MDC-T.
Mavhaire is casting aspersions on Tsvangirai and the MDC-T can only respond in kind.

If this is the path to a coalition, then the opposition is doomed to a quarrelling lot, who cannot look past their egos.

There is absolutely no need for all this posturing and grandstanding and if the opposition are not keen on uniting, then they should just come out in the open and say so.
But we have seen how fatal such arrogance is and when the next elections are lost, the opposition have no one to blame, but themselves.

In 2008, the opposition squandered a golden opportunity to unite, as they squabbled over positions.

Had they acted like grown-ups and looked beyond narrow selfish interests, they probably would have won that election outright.

The same scenario played out again in 2013, where they probably would have been stronger if there was a coalition, but again they blew the chance.

If left unchecked, 2018 might be another wasted opportunity for the opposition, as narrow interests come ahead of the bigger picture.

If the opposition fail to unite and lose the 2018 elections, then they too — all of them — need to be consigned to the dustbin of history, as an experiment that went horribly wrong.

Just as we ask of Zanu PF, we ask of the opposition: Look beyond parochial interests and put the nation first, for once.


  • comment-avatar
    Joe Cool 6 years ago

    The only hope for these imbeciles is to agree to let the matter be decided on the toss of a coin, and then bicker AFTER 2018.

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    Morty Smith 6 years ago

    Zimbabwe would be better of if Tsvangirai and Majuru and maybe Biti had heart attacks or strokes or something. Let some new blood through. The next generation can’t be as bad as this lot – can they?

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    kengerina soda 6 years ago

    mujuru cant lead the coalitition considering the fact that she is has very dirty and blood in her hands she presided over the death of many opposition cadres in her constituency due to violence.she must not even be a deputy

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    You are all getting it wrong good people. The coalition government between 2009 and 2013 was an excellent model. If the President the Right Honourable, Comrade, Doctor, Commander in Chief of the armed forces and Head of the goverment R G Mugabe had not been misled into fighting Dr Morgan instead of working with him that model would have worked. Think of a genuine power sharing with the country at heart. It does not matter who would be called President or prime minister for as long as the titles are taken with the genuine wish to save this nation from doom. Executive powers can be shared if people are genuine. What is required is political sanity and ceonmic recovery.

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      reader 6 years ago

      Exactly Who cares who is the president, prime minister what we care about is a Stable, honest and hardworking government that works for ZIMBABWE and its People, not for itself or individual grandoiusment.

      the coalition can work if there is a will, but will never work when everyone wants to be top dog, dont they know that teamwork is much easier than individual players.