HARARE– Another opposition political party led by an obscure agriculture economist launched in Harare Friday with calls to change the political culture of following big names who did not alleviate the suffering of the people of Zimbabwe.
Little known Knox Gwenzi Chivero Mutimusakwa, a 58-year-old agronomist who hails from Mhondoro district of the Mashonaland West Province, launched his Zimbabwe National Redemption Congress (ZNRC) and immediately declared he would stand for President in the 2018 general elections.
“The culture of big names in our politics is the greatest tragedy of politics in this country. We are saying we are Davids. We are not the Goliaths of politics. We are dwarfs, political midgets,” he said.
Mutimusakwa said the ruling Zanu PF party along with opposition parties that came before his had betrayed the trust of the people.
He said there was total confusion in the ranks of both the ruling and opposition parties, adding that there were undemocratic tendencies where some people believed they were entitled to perpetual leadership in their respective organisations.
“So we are saying we cannot have a situation where even those in opposition who purport to be democrats, are actually acting in a manner which mirrors what they are opposing,” he said.
Mutimusakwa, who has worked for the Ministry of Agriculture, Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services and the Agriculture Rural Development Agency (ARDA), among other government institutions, said the people had lost faith in the main opposition party, the MDC-T led by former Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai.
The MDC-T, he said, had failed to protect the people’s vote in 2013, which was a sign of poor leadership.
“They agreed to go into elections because they thought they had overwhelming support which would overwhelm the rigging. If you are a leader, you are there to see to it that you protect the vote of your supporters. So somebody slept on the job there, they failed to protect the vote of the supporters. This is why we are saying we have no faith in a lukewarm leadership which failed to protect the votes of their supporters,” he said.
Mutimusakwa said the ZNRC will not work with any opposition political party, saying their project would be supported by people who had lost faith in the existing political parties, adding they were self-sponsored and would never approach any individual or institution outside the country for support.
The ZNRC, he said, was against protests and demonstrations as a means of unseating the current government, saying it was constitutionally there and should only be removed through an election.
“We have a culture in Zimbabwe where politicians go to the extent of manipulating the conditions of the people to their advantage and then abandon them. This is why we are saying we as a political party are not in support demonstrations.
Now demonstrations from our experience, even if they start peaceful and well intentioned, because of the current condition of the people, they are bound to end up violent. Either the state will provoke the situation by trying to humiliate the demonstrators and the demonstrators will react or the state can plant infiltrators to cause havoc and mayhem among peaceful demonstrators,” he said.
Mutimusakwa said he had never held any influential position in any organisation and had never been a member of any political party.
This is the second party in as many months to be launched in the country after former Zanu PF official, Ace Lumumba, launched his VIVA party last month.
Africa News Agency