Opposition parties fail to take advantage of ZANU-PF woes

THE ruling ZANU-PF party, currently beleaguered with internal storms, continues to hog the limelight on the country’s political stage while opposition parties teeter on the sidelines without any real impact in the grand scheme of citizens’ lives.

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Tsvangirai

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A possible round of litigation currently hangs over the revolutionary party as disgruntled senior party leaders led by outspoken former secretary of administration Didymus Mutasa are set to challenge the authenticity of the ZANU-PF congress held last December.

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All the leading opposition political parties have seemingly played deaf and dumb to the effect that ZANU-PF’s instability is having on the nation, concerning themselves only with internal party affairs.

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The two splinters of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) led by Welshman Ncube and Sekai Holland are wrapped up with preparations for an upcoming joint congress in August where their unification is set to be consummated.

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Holland’s MDC Renewal Team will hold its maiden congress in April before the joint August congress.

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The country’s largest opposition party, the MDC led by Morgan Tsvangirai, has been waxing lyrical for weeks about putting together a national convergence indaba, a position which elicited a strong backlash from the MDC Renewal Team which claimed that its rivals had hijacked its grand plan.

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Other political outfits such as Simba Makoni’s Mavambo/Kusile/Dawn, Dumiso Dabengwa’s ZAPU and the National Constitutional Assembly led by Lovemore Madhuku have been off the political radar long before ZANU-PF’s implosion reached its current levels.

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The upheavals within the opposition camp dent the prospect that these respective political players could suddenly emerge from the woodworks and give ZANU-PF a good run for its money.

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Political observers say the inability of the opposition to cash in on the ZANU-PF instability was a sign itself that the opposition was still in disarray and did not have a concise plan of action.

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Charles Mangongera, a political analyst, said the opposition has been weakened by internal fighting and as a result there is no coherent alternative message coming out of them that can give hope to a disillusioned populace.

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He said a sense of fatalism seems to have gripped the nation, hence the proliferation of a myriad of religious formations and false prophets.

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“It is a sign that the country is crying out for leadership, which is glaringly absent in both the rulers and those who seek to rule,” said Mangongera.

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Indeed, the opposition has never fully recovered from the outcome of July 31 elections held in 2013 and could continue to play second fiddle to ZANU-PF.

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Vivid Gwede, a political commentator, said the ruling party’s internal fights have consumed the attention of the public because real power in politics has been transferred to ZANU-PF ever since the last elections.

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He observed that the succession fights in ZANU-PF, unlike the political dynamics in the opposition, have all the ingredients of attention grabbing such as the verbal wars, uncertainty, swift twists and high stakes all which have to do with the ultimate prize of getting into State House.

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“Another school of thought held the view that opposition leaders were watching from the periphery the ongoing in ZANU-PF and would plot their next course of action, once the ongoing instability had been concluded,” he said.

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Ncube, president of the splinter MDC said his party would be cautious as it watched the unfolding events in the ruling party and could not pre-empt if a split in ZANU-PF was imminent.
\n“Our experience and sufferings of the past tells us that ZANU-PF has been a monster for a long time,” Ncube said. – FinGaz