By Felex Share
A Nelson Chamisa victory in the July 30 elections would be catastrophic for Zimbabwe as the MDC Alliance candidate is an unstable and immature politician whose grasp of the country’s political discourse is characterised by paranoia, diplomatic sources and MDC insiders have said.
The diplomatic sources added that in the unlikely event that he won the polls, Mr Chamisa would have a difficult relationship with the security establishment which views him as immature for national leadership.
It is also understood that because of his paranoia, Mr Chamisa had alienated senior MDC-T officials in favour of his erstwhile student friends, a situation MDC-T insiders said would see him unleashing cub ministers on Zimbabwe if he won.
The comments by the diplomatic sources and MDC-T insiders come amid reports Mr Chamisa had failed to win the confidence of Sadc and African Union leaders.
The only person he had connected with successfully was Kenya’s opposition leader, Mr Raila Odinga, they said.
Mr Chamisa wants Sadc and the African Union to assist him in fighting the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC).
The sources said a Chamisa victory, though unlikely, would spell disaster for Zimbabwe on many counts.
“He has also lost the support of senior MDC officials because of his paranoia and immaturity. Thirdly, he would have a very difficult relationship with the security establishment which don’t view him as a stable character for national leadership.”
Sources said because of mistrust, his own security aides were having a torrid time working with him.
“There is a general perception that because of both suspicion and immaturity, even his own security aides who worked with the security establishment during the inclusive Government have been complaining that not only are they not trusted but that the level of mistrust is such that often they don’t know where he sleeps,” said another source. “Can you imagine if he were to be a Commander-in-Chief with this kind of outlook. How would he get along with the security forces? The situation has not been assisted by the White City Stadium incident which, if it had occurred to an insecure and immature character, could have created quite a security situation in the country.”
The source went on: “To be fair to the young man, this is a received problem to the extent that he inherited it from the late leader Mr Morgan Tsvangirai who, instead of resolving the succession issue, simply put three characters on the start-off line, forgetting that he wouldn’t live long enough to be the referee. Dead men cannot resolve succession issues; which means it was left to the young man to resolve the matter and just check with what degree of care he is doing it.
“Just last week, there were clashes in Midlands which reflected three fighting factions within MDC. One loyal to Chamisa and Amos Chibaya, another one loyal to Dr Khupe and the third one loyal to Mr Mwonzora and his sympathisers.” MDC insiders said the MDC-T national executive committee (NEC) barely met.
“It has been made worse by the fact that in place of senior members in the MDC-T, he (Mr Chamisa) has put his erstwhile friends in the Student Representative Council (SRC) and alienated senior members,” he said. “Chamisa is a very difficult character to work with. He has surrounded himself with friends from his student days.
“The only other senior person he seems to trust, but even then not wholly, is Tendai Biti. In the unlikely event that he wins, these (alienated senior officials) are the members who would steady his hand because they have the maturity and in the case of a few others, they have been part of Government (during the inclusive Government). As matters stand, visualising his victory means unleashing on Zimbabwe cub ministers as if we are back to 1980.”
Diplomatic sources said in the region and the African continent, Mr Chamisa was failing to win the hearts of leaders. He has approached a few African ambassadors accredited to Zimbabwe to assist in relaying his concerns to Sadc and the AU.
“He has had a difficult time in gaining the confidence of leaders within Sadc as well as on the continent with the exception of Odinga, who is in the opposition but whose career also illustrates the futility of politics of obduracy.”
Rwanda’s President Kagame dismissed claims by Mr Chamisa that he had assisted him craft his country’s ICT policy when they met in Geneva, Switzerland.
Mr Chamisa was ICT Minister during the inclusive Government and recently claimed during a rally that he had helped President Kagame. Mr Chamisa, sources said, had also approached church leaders to plead with President Mnangagwa for an inclusive Government after this month’s elections.