Mnangagwa Turns Down Chamisa’s Presidential Debate Challenge

President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s spokesperson George Charamba said his boss will not participate in a televised public presidential debate with opposition MDC-T’s presidential candidate Nelson Chamisa ahead of this year’s elections.

Charamba told NewsDay that Zanu PF party does not find value in a public debate saying that Mnangagwa will not be lulled into exposing his election strategy by the opposition. Said Charamba:

I don’t think we are likely to get it at all because we don’t find any value at all. One key component in political communication is go straight to the voter and they are many ways of doing it outside a presidential debate. If you are a clever political player, you don’t fit into the strategy of your opponent, it’s up to the President and Zanu PF to decide whether or not the presidential debate does advance their own communication strategy. If it does, you will have it and if it doesn’t, you won’t have it.

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In response, Chamisa’s spokesperson, Luke Tamborinyoka said Charamba’s statements showed that Mnangagwa and his team remained in the “analogue” era and had not embraced trends in the world of civilisation where presidential debates are the norm.


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