University of Kent law lecturer Alex Magaisa says Tapiwa Mashakada’s claim that Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) candidates for the 26 March by-election still belong to the MDC Alliance is meant to create voter apathy.
The MDC-T is led by Douglas Mwonzora while Chamisa leads the CCC formerly known as the MDC Alliance. Mwonzora now claims to be the leader of both MDC-T and MDC Alliance.
Mashakada, a senior MDC-T official, on Saturday sensationally claimed that former MDC Alliance members who filed their nominations for the by-elections under the CCC banner still belong to their former party.
In response, Magaisa, a former advisor to the late former Prime Minister of Zimbabwe Morgan Tsvangirai, said Mashakada’s claim shows that the MDC-T has realised that it is headed for a crushing defeat, and is trying to deflate hope in the CCC. Pindula News is publishing Magaisa’s post on Facebook verbatim:
1. Please don’t pay attention to the likes of Tapiwa Mashakada and his type in the MDCT. The lot knows the end is nigh. Realising that they face certain defeat and a fast track to political irrelevance, they are hoping to deflate hope in the Yellow Nation and fuel voter apathy in the forthcoming by-elections. Please use their trolling as motivation.
2. Mashakada says CCC candidates belong to their party as they didn’t “renounce” their membership. He conveniently forgets that his party recalled them from Parliament because they had allegedly “automatically expelled themselves”. He doesn’t say how & when they rejoined them!
3. Mashakada’s claim is a classic case of the English saying: you can’t have your cake and eat it. You can’t say a person ceased to be a member of your party and remove from Parliament while also claiming that he is a member of your party and your candidate for Parliament!
4. Mashakada’s party justified the parliamentary recalls arguing that a person had “automatically expelled” himself by joining another party. Now they turn around and claim he is still our member until he renounced his membership! One can’t be inside & outside at the same time.
5. The notion of freedom of association is alien to their lot. They don’t know the freedom to associate includes the freedom to disassociate. You cannot force a person to be a member of your party. Haungarambi kurambwaka! Mashakada arikuramba kurambwa. A relationship by ginya.
6. Mashakada says CCC candidates cannot ride on another party’s structures. The stupidity of the claim is that their party, the MDCT held a congress in 2020, purportedly using its party structures. The CCC has never claimed or used those structures. It’s an empty claim.
7. Second, Mashakada and allies have been saying there is no such thing as the MDC Alliance. They used this argument to grab the name. So how then do he and his lot claim the existence of structures when they said there was no party called the MDC Alliance?
8. The problem for Mashakada and his lot is that they expected a fight for the MDC Alliance name but they didn’t get it. Chamisa and his allies won the battle without fighting by simply walking away. Mwonzora & Mashakada were left holding an empty shell. Hence they are furious.
9. You would expect Mashakada to be mounting a vigorous campaign for his party’s candidates, extolling their virtues & selling them to the electorate. But no, it’s a sign of how lowly he rates them that he is preoccupied with grabbing their rival’s candidates.
10. For the likes of Mwonzora and Mashakada, their interest is not in how to win democratic space from ZANU PF but how to stop the authentic opposition from reclaiming stolen democratic space. In chiShona it’s called politics of shayisano: if I can’t have it then neither can you!
11. I would not normally write like this as I don’t believe trolling deserves attention. But too many innocent people have been so traumatised by the conduct of Mwonzora and Mashakada that they literally jump in fear each time they come out with threats. But these are desperate threats.
12. These are acts of desperate men who realise that their rickety boat is sinking into the Yellow Sea. They are hoping to dampen the spirits of CCC supporters ahead of the by-elections. Some might be tempted to say why bother if they will be recalled? Please don’t fall for it.