By Staff Reporter
HARARE: Opposition MDC-T leader Nelson Chamisa says his party is not opposed to the “liberation project” but wants to take it further and bring it to its logical conclusion.
In his Independence Day message Tuesday, Chamisa said this year’s celebrations allows patriotic Zimbabweans to take time to reflect on “the supreme national sacrifice in which the sons and daughters of this land paid the ultimate sacrifice while some lost their limbs so that the whims of future generations could walk again.”
While in the past the MDC-T has not been part of national celebrations accusing Zanu PF of privatising national events, the opposition leader said they will join in this year’s independence festivities.
“Some of us are proud of the liberation legacy and the successful quest by Zimbabweans to reclaim their dignity from a oppressive colonial regime,” he said.
“Even as a post-liberation political formation, we stand for the continuation and perpetuation and not the negation or opposition of the liberation project,” said Chamisa.
“We are proud and patriotic Zimbabweans and tomorrow we will be joining the rest of the nation in paying tribute to that invaluable chapter in our national story.”
He added: “Our only wish is to complete the outstanding business of our independence so that political independence would truly mean the advent of freedoms and the proper respect for the right to vote which was at the core of our protracted national struggle.
“The land and the right to vote were at the epicentre of the people’s struggle.”
Chamisa argued that a select few from the ruling elite have hijacked the people’s independence.
“In many ways, the sanctity of our struggle has been undermined, if not hijacked, by a selected few who have betrayed the noble aspirations of Zimbabweans when they waged that brutal struggle.
“As a post-liberation political formation, we anchor our own struggles on the liberation struggle, its values and aspirations. We truly honour the liberation effort.
“(On Saturday) we will be joining the rest of the nation in commemorating the heroic act of Zimbabweans in consigning colonial oppression to the dustbins of history.”
The MDC Alliance presidential candidate said he had been appalled by the grinding poverty across the country during his rallies and feels challenged to complete the liberation struggle business.
“What was glaringly palpable was the self-evident collapse of the national infrastructure and the fracturing of our communities. I saw collapsed services, poor roads and dilapidated hospitals.
“I saw for myself the deadening poverty pervading our rural areas and how Zimbabweans are struggling to put food on the table,” said Chamisa.
He said Zimbabweans in the rural areas have been cut off from the mainstream economy.
Chamisa accused Zanu PF of intimidation and using “command politics.”
“I saw command politics at play, as evidenced by the use of food as a political weapon in the rural communities.
“Known and identified government bureaucrats have been deployed to advance a partisan agenda and to strike fear in the rural communities,” the MDC-T leader said.
Zanu PF has denied the allegations accusing the opposition of politicking.