…As MDC Alliance renews call for talks
Zimbabwe’s main opposition parties Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) and the MDC Alliance rekindled their animosity with a clash this time around Workers Day Commemorations in Masvingo hosted by labor movement Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) over having a dialogue.
The two parties’ representatives at the event held at Mucheke Hall in Masvingo on May 1, 2023 clashed on the best course of action before elections with MDC Alliance Provincial member Ephanos Makiwa saying there should be a dialogue between all political parties while CCC Masvingo Province Secretary for Elections Struggle Nyahunda said there should not be any dialogue unless it is a meaningful one.
Makiwa said calling for talks does not mean the party selling out but it is a move to find lasting solutions for the country to avoid a disputed election.
“Calling for talks does not mean that we are sellouts, but it is because we have seen that this country cannot have permanent solutions without having unity of all the political parties (nyika ino haigadzirisike kana tisina kutanga tagara pasi sevana vanyamunhu).
“At the Lancaster House, opponents at that time engaged in a dialogue which was not a sellout thing and the same happened in 2008 where Tsvangirai had talks with the government of the day and came up with the Government of National Unity and it was a not a sellout which is why we are advocating for a rational disputation where we get to agree to disagree.
“As MDC Alliance, we say we are not sellouts which is why we approach government openly (hatiendi usiku kunotaura negovernment as masikati pachena muchizviona). Obviously, if we look at it, if we are not careful, we will be heading for a disputed election like in 2018,” said Makiwa.
However, Nyahunda said the dialogue should have real political players not every ‘Tom and Jerry’ saying they cannot have a dialogue with parties without representatives in council or parliament.
“We are not refusing to take part in having a dialogue but we want a meaningful dialogue. We cannot have a dialogue with a party that does not even have a councillor or MP. That dialogue is futile because anyone from the streets can be taken on board to represent a party.
“After the 2018 elections, we resolved to not have a dialogue with people who do not have a following (vasingateerwi kana nemadzimai avo,) so we have resolved to have a meaningful dialogue convened by a neutral party,” said Nyahunda.
Nyahunda also said the so-called rational disputation was a way of distracting the conducting of elections over the next few months.
“The rational disputation that was being talked about here is just a way of delaying the conducting of elections. We want the elections to be held in July or August and allow people to choose their candidate (CCC president) and workers can get to have better salaries,” added Nyahunda.
The event was celebrated under the theme ‘Workers demand an inclusive Zimbabwe free from poverty, corruption and oppression’ and was also attended by various organizations including Zanu PF members, Masvingo City councilors, Masvingo United Residents and Ratepayers Association (MURRA), National Social Security Authority (NSSA) and Ministry of Labour among other affiliate unions in the ZCTU.
ZCTU called upon government to give workers US$ salaries in order to restore wage value and enhancing social security for the workers among other issues.