MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa has little room to manoeuvre as the ruling ZANU PF party takes full advantage of the coronavirus-induced national lockdown to decimate his party, a political analyst has said.
University of Zimbabwe political science lecturer Eldred Masunungure said he feels pity for Chamisa because he cannot mobilise his supporters due to the lockdown while SADC and the UN cannot to do anything against rampant human rights violations targeting his supporters. Said Masunungure:
I feel pity for Chamisa and the MDC Alliance because they are boxed in a manner that thinking outside that box is virtually impossible.
Zanu PF and the government are taking full advantage of the lockdown to decimate their political rival.
There is little scope for Chamisa to robustly respond because he cannot mobilise for demonstrations and until the restrictions have been limited, the party finds itself in an invidious position.
Perhaps Chamisa has to consider social media as an alternative, but then again it may not be as widespread as he would want. He cannot mobilise beyond social media.
He has been appealing to Sadc and the United Nations, which has condemned the rights abuses and persecution of the opposition, but beyond that, what else can they do?
This comes as the government has launched a clampdown on MDC Alliance activists, with Joana Mamombe (MP), Netsai Marova and Cecilia Chimbiri dragged to court for allegedly stage-managing an abduction.
Moreover, several lawyers who have represented opposition politicians have been arrested over the past few days including Chamisa’s attorney, Advocate Thabani Mpofu.