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CCC recalls: Hope is a finite resource – The Zimbabwe Independent

Tshabangu’s recalls have raised questions about the tactics employed in this political manoeuvre and its implications for Zimbabwean democracy.

HOW is one Sengezo Tshabangu’s recalls of Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) Members of Parliament a dress-rehearsal for politics of manipulation and inconsistence in Zimbabwe?

For students of synchronised politics, political repression lies beneath political manipulation. The end to which Zimbabwean politicians forget that hope is finite is shocking, given that the dominant theory in career politics is political realism.

The CCC politicians have now been manipulated into inconsistence. And when techniques of regime control are used to lipstick the frog of repression, opposition members are strategically excluded from political power and social influence through paranoia.

The CCC MPs have been treated like dismissed union members more than parliamentarians. A detailed plan seems to have been planned for such an eventuality, following the CCC’s strategy of ambiguity and Sadc’s involvement with Zimbabwe’s election fiasco.

The news doing the rounds is that Tshabangu is a “CCC signatory” at Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) and has also moved to bar CCC MPs from using CCC in the by-elections for the recalled MPs, something akin to the Staatsstreich or coup d’état from above canvassed by Wilheim II and his advisers.

The political landscape in Zimbabwe has thus been marked by turmoil and uncertainty, with the CCC facing a wave of recalls of its MPs.

Tshabangu’s recalls have raised questions about the tactics employed in this political manoeuvre and its implications for Zimbabwean democracy. In this article, I will delve into the complex dynamics at play, drawing parallels with historical political manipulation, including references to figures like Frederick Wilhelm I, Frederick the Great, Wilhelm II and Bismarck, while also considering the courage and initiative displayed by individuals like Crawford during wartime.

The article is not meant to be a lecture on politics, but seeks to show that CCC can, if they want, stop aiding Zanu PF’s system of political manipulation.

Repression through manipulation

The recalls of CCC MPs orchestrated by Tshabangu are seen by many as a dress-rehearsal for politics of manipulation from Zanu PF.

These recalls have raised concerns about the use of political repression masked as political manipulation.

The CCC MPs have been treated like dismissed union members, rather than elected parliamentarians, a situation reminiscent of the way Frederick Wilhelm I ruled with stern authority.

Furthermore, Tshabangu’s move to try and bar CCC MPs from participating in the by-elections for the recalled MPs can be compared to a Staatsstreich or coup d’état from above, akin to political tactics employed by Wilhelm II and his advisers.

This strategy seems to be designed to weaken the CCC’s political influence and disrupt their efforts to contest Zanu PF at Sadc level or an internal political structure to be held under Sadc mediation, following the flawed 2023 elections, much like the political manipulation carried out by Bismarck to achieve his goals in Germany.

It seems, the tool of manipulation through Tshabangu is no different from how political parties, which threatened the Bonapartist-dictatorial regime were silenced through a policy of political manipulation away from political coalition.

A clear example is how Bismarck split the liberals, perhaps his most dangerous political opponents in the 1860s and 1870s, by exposing contradictions between nationalism and constitutionalism in liberal ideology through unifying Germany without liberalising it (1866-71) and the (1878-1879) through introducing protectionism combined with stifled political or civil rights.

There is outright negative coalition to ensure even if Sadc calls for fresh election, CCC leader Nelson Chamisa might not be a force to reckon with. The goal could be to force CCC to hold a congress before December.

But Tshabangu debacle will be Germany in Zimbabwe, Frederick Wilhelm I was stern, Frederick II (the Great) was a folk hero, and Willheim II the crown prince abdicated.

The Speaker’s narrow view

The role of the Speaker of Parliament in these recalls has come under scrutiny in many cases where MPs like Temba Mliswa, Willias Madzimure, Tendai Biti and others have been recalled from their political parties.

The current Speaker, as elected in different parliamentary sessions, has taken a narrow view of the recall provisions in the Constitution of Zimbabwe, much like how Frederick the Great held a firm grip on his reign in Prussia. The Speaker argues that they are not a court of law and that those aggrieved should seek legal recourse.

In this way, he behaves like a de facto President of the Republic, something which is a constitutional problem that CCC and its predecessors like MDC-T and MDC-A have not taken seriously.

This narrow interpretation means that the electorate and the aggrieved elected MPs are at the mercy of unelected judges, often driven by political expedience, which ties the speaker’s hands away from practicing due process when dealing with recall initiators like Tshabangu.

The absence of due process

The core issue in the recall processes lies in the absence of due process in recalling an elected MP, a situation like how Frederick Wilhelm I upheld strict authority in his rule.

The process is mired in political complexity, making it difficult for MPs and the electorate to seek justice through the legal system. This lack of clear procedures puts democracy at risk and enables political manipulation.

In turn, voters are forced to practice apathy especially in by-elections, something career and realist politicians use to create a paranoid society in Zimbabwe.

Durable solutions

No one can teach their master politics, but on the Tshabangu debacle, the CCC is lost so far. If social media activists say we do not have anything called opposition in Zimbabwe, it is because no one is categorically willing to end opportunistic or pseudo-charlatans masquerading as politicians.

To end the Tshabangu debacle and ensure a more transparent and democratic political landscape in Zimbabwe where Zanu PF’s intransigence as a system is checked, several steps can be taken, drawing inspiration from historical precedents such as:

Holistic call for reforms

At theoretical and practical normative levels, the CCC should consider comprehensive and consistent calls for reforms to clarify and streamline the recall process, much like Bismarck’s unification of Germany, to ensure transparency and due process.

The recall process should be overseen by an independent body or commission to prevent undue influence by political actors, like the need for unbiased judges during critical periods in history. 

A clear and efficient process for judicial review of recall decisions should be established, ensuring that elected MPs have a fair chance to challenge recalls, as seen in countries with strong judicial systems.

Civic education and public awareness campaigns can inform the electorate about their rights and the implications of political manipulation, empowering them to make informed choices, as individuals like United States private soldier Crawford displayed initiative and courage during times of crisis against Germans.

Practice politics of realism

Class theorist Karl Marx once said that “the production of too many useful things results in too many useless people”.

He saw democracy as a road to socialism and the theory of communism as an abolition of private property. We have seen how CCC’s strategic ambiguity has become an open secret and how CCC has been besieged and to employ Marx’s words, how, or the bureaucrat, the world of politics is a mere object to be manipulated by him.

For liberation backers and socialist revolutionaries, the meaning of peace is the absence of opposition to socialism.

So, everyone is now worried about Zimbabwean politicians, who stand on something but cannot stand firm on it. The MPs were recalled as CCC MPs, but we hear something like they are being barred from using CCC, something Tshabangu may take to the courts until by-elections have ended and perhaps Zanu PF has gotten their two-thirds majority.

To me, this endless drama could have been ended once and for all. The CCC hinted on ending formal processes that glorify the Zanu PF and proxy systems.

What point is to be proved by CCC now by participating and perhaps, winning the elections they won, again? What if the card of apathy eats into their vote when voter fatigue weighs in? If at Sadc, whispers or truth, the incumbent president was told or made to know that there is need for dialogue with CCC, why is CCC forgetting the Shona proverb, “mutambirwi gwinyawo?”, which means that one should not aid his adversaries.

Without lying to each other, even those labelled as pro-establishment no longer speak about defending their territory or gains confidently. There comes a time when CCC says they have disengaged. After all, it was their position that the election was not free and fair.

In Sierra Leone, the opposition recently set a precedent of resignation that have discredited the incumbent presidency once and for all. The CCC is giving Zanu PF a blood life by continuing to take part in the by-elections or seemingly illegitimate processes.

The pertinent question becomes this: by participating in things that you know what will happen, whose interests are you serving? Even if miracles happen, this does not mean the children of light should be unclever.

When mistakes are not mistakes, they are not repeated. When mistakes are repeated from MDC, MDC-T, MDC-A, CCC and others, they become grave mistakes.

Each opposition politician should know that hope is finite. That is why most opposition politicians joined Zanu PF out of hunger, cold politics and loss of hope in how things are being done.

There comes a time when people will begin to question if their hope makes sense. Zanu PF is not consistent and CCC now aids it by indicating right and turning left.

A note on Sadc processes

Sadc only takes Zimbabweans where they want to go. Even Frontline States benefited from Zanu PF simply because citizens were involved in active combat. Let us not pin our hope on external assistance when the opposition blesses the system by taking part in politics of brazen politics.

While some are negotiating to work with CCC, hardliners are scuttling the process. What is there for the ordinary person? When Sadc preliminary report came out, the opposition CCC missed the opportunity to make things unmovable.

Things that logically flowed from the report are things they follow with verve. If Mnangagwa was illegitimate, he swore in their MPs. And CCC MPs are legitimate when they were sworn by an illegitimate president?

In Shona they say, kana wafunga kudya mbwa idya iri hono. It’s either you capitulate or collaborate. Please anyone in CCC or anywhere, save us from career politicians.

Or read some feminine threads from one Elisabeth Valerio on why she is not taking part in an election where the impartiality of Zec and the judiciary is at stake and where there is a variable of unconstitutional recalls, which the CCC fails to consider as a finite resource. 

High Court ruling

However, High Court judge Justice Tawanda Chitapi this week issued an interim interdict stopping Tshabangu from recalling the opposition party’s legislators and councillors until the matter has been finalised.

In his ruling on Tuesday, Justice Chitapi said: “Pending the determination of this urgent application, the first respondent (Tshabangu) shall not purport to issue any letters of suspension of any members of the National Assembly, Senate or local authorities elected under the applicant (CCC)’s ticket.

“The second respondent (Speaker of the National Assembly Jacob Mudenda), third respondent (Senate president Mabel Chinomona) and fourth respondent (Local Government minister Winston Chitando) as the case may be, shall not effect any recalls made pursuant to any request by the first respondent (Tshabangu) in terms hereof.”

Hofisi is a lawyer, conversationalist and transdisciplinary researcher. He has interests in governance and international law. — [email protected].


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Breaking news – Chronicle

Sukulwenkosi Dube-Matutu, [email protected]

INSIZA Rural District Council has joined hands with residents to construct Bekezela Primary School in Filabusi Town, which has brought relief to the local community.

The project was initiated by the community and the council chipped in with support for the project using devolution funds.

The school opened its doors to learners last year starting with ECD A to Grade 3  learners. 

The council used devolution funds to build two classroom blocks while the community mobilised resources and constructed a third classroom block. 

Parents are targeting to build a classroom block each year so that the school can introduce the next grade every year.

In an interview, Insiza Rural District Council chief executive officer, Mr Shepard Tshuma, said the new school has come in handy to decongest the other two schools in Filabusi Town.

“The devolution fund has come in handy for us as a local authority in improving education sector. In 2019 we came in and assisted in constructing Bekezela Primary School in Filabusi Town. 

“We assisted by constructing two classroom blocks. The community didn’t sit down and watch but they also mobilised resources and constructed a third classroom block,” said Mr Tshuma.

“Now the school houses ECD A to Grade three learners. The plan is to have a classroom block each year so that the school can accommodate children who will be going to the next grade.

“The school has helped to decongest Filabusi Government Primary and Marvel Primary School. At Filabusi Government we had 23 classes but with only nine classrooms. This meant that some pupils were learning in the open space.”

Mr Tshuma said they also used devolution funds to erect a perimeter fence at the school, build an administration block, and buy furniture for the school.

He said devolution funds will be used to build cottages at the school and a computer laboratory while the local authority will, starting next year, use devolution funds to promote the teaching of science subjects in schools. 

Mr Tshuma said this will help to ensure that local schools churn out learners who can enrol at the Gwanda State University. He commended the community for supporting the construction of Bekezela Primary School saying such commitment from parents was necessary for bringing about the necessary development in communities.

Bekezela Primary School Development Committee chairperson, Mr Pilate Siziba said the school has brought relief to their children as some had to walk up to five kilometres.

“Besides learners being congested at the two other schools, children used to walk up to five kilometres to get to school. Some of them were passing through a bushy area, which is very risky for primary learners,” he said. 

“As a community, we realised that we didn’t have to wait on Government to provide everything but we also had to initiate our own development. We are now targeting to start construction of a four-classroom block. We thank the Government and council for their intervention through the devolution fund,” he said.

Insiza RDC has used devolution funds to tackle four key thematic areas in the district namely education, machinery and equipment, infrastructure, and health.

The council has so far received $717 million out of its yearly allocation of $1,5 billion. Some of the projects that have been done include the purchase of a motorised grader, which upon being delivered will see an acceleration in the road maintenance works in the district.

Other projects that have been implemented using devolution funds include the construction of an ECD classroom block at Artherstone Primary School, completion of Sukasihambe Primary School, construction of a Science laboratory at Lubuze Secondary School among other projects, completion of Mbondo Clinic and equipping Montrose Clinic.

Devolution funds are assisting local authorities in fulfilling their obligation of ensuring improved access to social amenities across the country through the development of key infrastructure such as clinics, classroom blocks, roads, and bridges among other facilities.

Social amenities and infrastructure development are some of the major pillars of the National Development Strategy (NDS1). — @DubeMatutu

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High Court overturns Sikhala’s conviction in obstruction of justice case

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By Mary Taruvinga

The High Court has acquitted former opposition MP Job Sikhala in a case he was accused of obstructing the course of justice after he allegedly announced that a Zanu PF activist had murdered Moreblessing Ali.

The State alleged that he posted a video that was intended to mislead the police who were investigating the death of Ali whose body was found dismembered.

Justices Pisirayi Kwenda and Benjamin Chikowero sitting as an appeal court ruled that magistrate Marewanazvo Gofa erred when she convicted Sikhala in May this year.

They quashed the lower court’s conviction ordering that the politician be found “not guilty and acquitted.”

Sikhala will however remain in detention as he is on trial on additional charges including incitement to commit violence, and disorderly conduct.

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Unlocking the power of disability inclusion for healthier, sustainable communities – NewsDay

By addressing the needs and rights of persons with disabilities in all their diversities (PWDDs), policymakers in Zimbabwe have a unique opportunity to enhance social and economic transformation while mitigating health, environmental and climate risks.

IN the face of pressing social, health and environmental crises, such as climate change, infrastructure deterioration, and rapid urbanisation, it is essential to recognise the potential of disability inclusion and management as a catalyst for creating healthier and sustainable communities.

By addressing the needs and rights of persons with disabilities in all their diversities (PWDDs), policymakers in Zimbabwe have a unique opportunity to enhance social and economic transformation while mitigating health, environmental and climate risks.

This opinion piece aims to highlight the critical importance of generating evidence-based reports laden with issues that advocate timely and regular improvements in policies and infrastructural development to foster a more inclusive society.

Climate change, crumbling infrastructure, and rapid urbanisation are prevailing phenomena that are presenting significant obstacles to populations, inclusive of PWDDs through increased vulnerability, health risks and inaccessible adaptation measures.

Climate change-related events such as extreme weather events, heatwaves and floods, much as they affect the majority population, they too, disproportionately affect PWDDs, who face challenges in skin infections, evacuations or finding safe shelter.

Climate change has a pronounced impact on the health of PWDDs, particularly those with respiratory diseases or heat sensitivity.

It is associated with a rise in air pollution due to factors like wildfires, increased dust storms and industrial emissions.

This can worsen respiratory conditions among individuals with disabilities, such as asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease leading to more frequent and severe symptoms.

Heat-related respiratory distress through rising temperatures and heatwaves can trigger respiratory distress or exacerbate pre-existing respiratory conditions.

Further, high heat and humidity can make it more challenging for individuals with respiratory disabilities to breathe, leading to increased discomfort, heat exhaustion or heatstroke, which can have severe health consequences.

Medical experts are increasingly advocating for the implementation of climate-responsive health policies to address the intersection of climate change and public health.

These policies aim to proactively address the health impacts of climate change on vulnerable populations, inclusive of PWDDs.

Integrating climatic considerations into healthcare systems, promoting awareness and implementing preventive measures, these policies can enhance preparedness, reduce health risks and foster resilience in the face of a changing climate.

Experts observe that heat mitigation strategies such as the provision of cooling centres by ensuring access to shade and hydration are important; as they reduce the impact of high temperatures on individuals with heat sensitivity.

Public awareness campaigns can educate PWDDs, their caregivers, and healthcare providers about the specific risks and preventive measures related to respiratory diseases and heat sensitivity.

By recognising and addressing the unique vulnerabilities of PWDDs to climate change, policymakers and healthcare professionals can develop targeted interventions and adaptations.

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) is an international treaty that promotes and protects the rights of persons with disabilities.

It is closely linked to the sustainable development goals as it aligns with the goal of leaving no one behind and achieving inclusive and sustainable development for all.

In view of this international convention, there is need to desist from developing inaccessible adaptation measures by policymakers through developing climate adaptation measures, such as the construction of barriers or relocation efforts, that do not consider the specific needs of PWDDs, leaving them more vulnerable and marginalised.

Zimbabwe’s disability laws and policies have shown progress in promoting the rights of PWDDs. The country has ratified the UNCRPD and enacted the Disabled Persons Act, the disability policy is also available, which recognises the rights of PWDDs.

However, challenges remain, including limited accessibility, inadequate implementation and gaps in social inclusion.

Further efforts are needed to ensure effective implementation and meaningful inclusion and empowerment of PWDDs in all spheres of society, aligning with the goals of SDGs.

The devastating Cyclone Idai of March 2019 serves as a stark reminder of the importance of considering the specific needs and rights of PWDDs in climate adaptation measures.

In the aftermath of the cyclone, it became evident that many of the relief efforts and infrastructure rebuilding initiatives did not adequately address the accessibility requirements of PWDDs.

This oversight left them even more vulnerable and marginalised, facing immense challenges in accessing essential services, emergency shelters and healthcare.

The experiences from Cyclone Idai emphasise the critical need for policymakers to prioritise inclusive planning and ensure that climate adaptation measures are designed to be accessible and inclusive for all, including PWDDs.

Deteriorating infrastructure everywhere, marked by gaping potholes, uncollected and unsightly dumpsites along major roads, broken sidewalks, lack of ramps at public and private institutions and inaccessible public transportation, all hinder the mobility and independence of travelling populations inclusive of PWDDs,

Shifting perceptions: From risk to resource

Disability inclusion requires a significant shift in societal perceptions, moving away from viewing disabilities as solely health or environmental risks. Instead, PWDDs should be recognised as valuable contributors and agents of change.

By embracing their skills, talents, and experiences, we can tap into a vast pool of untapped potential, fostering creativity, innovation and resilience within communities.

Creating accessible infrastructure

One crucial aspect of promoting disability inclusion is the creation of inclusive and accessible infrastructure. This includes accessible transportation, public spaces, buildings and information and communication technologies.

By implementing universal design principles, policymakers can ensure that infrastructure is usable by everyone, regardless of their abilities. This not only benefit PWDDs, but it also improves the overall liveability and functionality of communities.

Employment and economic empowerment

Creating inclusive employment opportunities is vital for economic transformation and social inclusion.

Policies should be enhanced to promote equal access to education, vocational training and job opportunities for PWDDs.

By recognising their skills and providing necessary accommodations, employers can tap into a diverse talent pool, fostering productivity and innovation. This, in turn, contributes to the economic growth and social cohesion of communities.

Health and well-being

Access to quality healthcare services and inclusive health policies are fundamental for the well-being of PWDDs. It is crucial to address barriers to healthcare, such as physical accessibility, communication, and stigma.

Additionally, targeted interventions and awareness campaigns can promote early detection, prevention, and treatment of disabilities, contributing to better health outcomes for PWDDs and the broader community.

Disaster preparedness and climate resilience

In the face of climate change and environmental risks, it is essential to consider the specific needs and rights of PWDDs in disaster preparedness and climate resilience strategies.

This includes accessible evacuation plans, early warning systems, and ensuring that shelters and relief efforts are inclusive.

By prioritising the inclusion of PWDDs in climate action plans, policymakers can build more resilient and adaptive communities.

Education and awareness

Promoting inclusive education and raising awareness about disability rights and inclusion are crucial components of transformative change.

By fostering inclusive educational environments at all levels, policymakers can empower PWDDs with the knowledge and skills to actively participate in society.

Additionally, awareness campaigns can challenge stereotypes, reduce discrimination and foster a culture of inclusivity.


In the face of community social, health and environmental crises, disability inclusion and management hold immense potential for transforming challenges into opportunities.

By reframing and rethinking disability as a resource and embracing the diverse abilities and contributions of PWDDs, Zimbabwe can create healthier and sustainable communities.

Timely improvements in policies and infrastructure, encompassing accessible infrastructure, inclusive employment, healthcare services, climate resilience and education, are vital for realising this vision.

It is imperative for policymakers to prioritise disability inclusion and work collaboratively with stakeholders and PWDDs to create a society where everyone can thrive, regardless of their abilities.

By doing so, Zimbabwe can lead the way towards a more inclusive, equitable and sustainable future.

Tonderayi Matonho is a journalist exploring disability inclusivity, participation, integration and management debate across communities. He can be reached at 263-777 052 658, Email: [email protected].

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