By Robert Tapfumaneyi
FORMER Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara has condemned his erstwhile opposition colleagues within MDC for alleged lack of strategy in dealing with Zanu PF in their pursuit to becoming the next governors of the country.
He was speaking at a Harare conference organised by SIVIO Institute (SI) International Summit which provide an opportunity for non-partisan and objective dialogue on the current challenges facing Zimbabwe.
The conference was held under the theme: “First year of the 2nd Republic: Continuing with the old or Breaking with the past” and was attended by captains of industry, opposition political party leaders, labour and civil society.
In his remarks, Mutambara said it was remote that Zanu PF would accept MDC demands for the formation of a transitional authority, let alone recent demands by MDC leader Nelson Chamisa to be allowed to rule for two years during the current Emmerson Mnangagwa tenure.
He said the opposition needs to have a clear strategy and roadmap on how they want critical issues in the country addressed, adding that he was not satisfied with Chamisa’s inconsistency in outlining the main opposition’s overall demands.
This, he said, has unnecessarily brought a lot of confusion among opposition supporters and neutrals.
“In terms my friends in the opposition (MDC), I have lots of respect; they did very well even by the rigged election. 2.1 million votes are a lot of votes, they did very well in Parliament and in everything,” said the former leader of an MDC breakaway party.
“But I also want to urge them to think being strategic. What do you want; one day you say ‘we don’t want an inclusive government, we just want reforms, we want to talk about reforms’; another day, they say ‘we want an NTA (National Transitional Authority)’.
“It’s a joke because there is no one who accepts that. The opposition won’t accept that because they want to be in power and in government, and Zanu PF won’t accept that.”
Mutambara added, “And now two weeks ago, I hear ‘we want two years for Mnangagwa and two years for MDC and the next day we don’t want that’”
Since his controversial defeat to Mnangagwa in the July 2018 elections, Chamisa has made several demands from Mnangagwa which have all been rebuffed.
The young opposition heavyweight has demanded Mnangagwa to accept “defeat” and gracefully surrender power to him while claiming he is the one who actually won the highly disputed poll.
Chamisa has also been linked to demands of a GNU but has been strong in denying his party was not “desperate for a GNU”.
The ex-cabinet minister and MP has also demanded a transitional authority to superintend over the country’s affairs until the next elections.
Lately while addressing his supporters at an “election victory” thank-you rally weekend, Chamisa has demanded that he be granted time to rule the country for two years as a compromise gesture by Mnangagwa.