Nelson Chamisa, the leader of the Opposition Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC), has advised his supporters to attend Zanu PF campaign rallies for their own safety, but to vote against the party in the ballot box on August 23.
This recommendation comes in response to reports of increasing political tension, particularly in rural areas, where members of an obscure Zanu PF affiliate called Forever Associates Zimbabwe are conducting door-to-door campaigns, warning villagers against supporting opposition candidates.
During a gathering at an opposition member’s residence in Mahusekwa, Marondera West constituency, Chamisa expressed his concern about the ongoing victimization of his supporters. He urged them to adopt the “mango strategy” by appearing supportive on the outside (green, representing Zanu PF), but maintaining their true allegiance on the inside (yellow, representing the opposition). Chamisa emphasized the importance of not risking their lives for politics but assured them that their votes would reflect their true intentions.
Chamisa also acknowledged the presence of traditional leaders at the event and expressed his dismay at reports of their victimization. He stressed that a leader with genuine support would not engage in such behavior. Chamisa reassured the traditional leaders that once in power, the opposition would not seek their support, but instead allow them to fulfill their cultural custodial role without interference in politics.
The opposition leader accused the ruling party of employing some of its members to contest the upcoming elections as CCC candidates in order to confuse voters and split the opposition vote. Chamisa noted the increased security presence in the area and attributed it to Zanu PF’s panic in the face of impending change. However, he encouraged his supporters to remain strong and resilient, emphasizing their faith in Jesus as a source of strength.
Overall, Chamisa’s message to his supporters is to navigate the campaign period cautiously, ensuring personal safety by outwardly supporting Zanu PF when necessary but resolutely voting against the party in the elections.