By Buhle Tshavango
The MDC coalition might have well suffered a still birth after any little faith that had arisen over a stable opposition party in the 2018 elections was dealt a heavy blow by violence that broke out suggesting factionalism just hours after a show of unity.
Most Zimbabweans have come to the conclusion that amidst the vote rigging, intimidation and Nikuvus, the real reason there has been no change of power for more than three decades is the lack of a formidable opposition.
With new political parties mushrooming by the day, MDC albeit shattered into many fragments had been the next best choice after nothing else. The grand coalition of the party’s faction had sent tongues wagging over expectations of a possible change of power only for the euphoria to die down soon after due to the attack of party VP Khupe supposedly by ‘fellow’ party members united by the coalition.
Not only did the act of violence discredit the coalition but also gave ammunition to other parties to dismiss the whole process a charade.
The Crisis Coalition of Zimbabwe (CiCZ) described the intraparty attacks as disappointing as they are against the values and principles which they stand for.
“It is our fervent hope that as the country heads towards elections, political parties will intensify peace campaigns through their leadership.
Political party leaders should desist from justifying any acts of violence through careless statements. Party leaders should be the ambassadors of peace and they should preach tolerance and peace especially among party supporters”, said CiCZ spokesperson Dumisani Nkomo.
In a press statement released by activist Linda Masarira on behalf of Zimbabwe Women In Politics Alliance (ZWIPA) the act was seen as a patriarchal stance by the party.
“Without any intention to meddle, dictate or intrude into private affairs of political parties in-particular the MDC~T, Im baffled, disturbed and equally angered by the physical attack of Ma Khupe.
“The adoption of violence as an instrument of arbitrage is totally uncalled for, especially in a political terrain where most women shun political activities due to violent abuse, assault and physical manhandling… This vibrant MDC-T VP is a beacon of hope for most women detesting politics due to a rugged violent terrain and her attack is a rubber~ stamps to the seating perception”, she said.
The Zimbabwe Human Rights Association (ZimRights) weighed in by saying any incidences of violence by any political party in Zimbabwe for whatever purpose is repugnant to human rights and democratic expression.
“The MDC-T, which has perennially complained of violence against its supporters, should know better the dire effects of this barbaric act”, said ZimRights.
The timing of such irrational party insurrectrion leaves very little to be desired, rather working against their goal to garner voter confidence towards the 2018 harmonised elections