Silence not weakness, Chamisa warned
HARARE Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s silence amid continued “accusations by opposition leader Nelson Chamisa that he rigged the July 30 elections is not a sign of weakness,” his spokesperson has reportedly said.
According to The Standard newspaper, George Charamba said that Mnangagwa was not weak. “…the silence of Mnangagwa is not a weakness. He is a man of steel and wool, depending on which side you tickle him. This narrative that the legitimacy of the president is made through acceptance of defeat by the opposition leader is a false narrative,” Charamba was quoted as saying. Charamba’s remarks came as the leader of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) maintained last week that he won the elections and “he was not going to wait for the 2023 general elections to face off with Mnangagwa.” News Day reported. Chamisa said that he was working on a “grand plan” to unseat Mnangagwa “peacefully before the next elections. Zimbabwe’s top court in August dismissed MDC’s bid to have presidential elections annulled over alleged rigging in favour of Mnangagwa. In a unanimous ruling, Chief Justice Luke Malaba dismissed the application with costs after strongly criticising the legal challenge. Mnangagwa, of the ruling Zanu-PF party, won the election with 50.6 percent of the vote - just enough to meet the 50 percent threshold needed to avoid a run-off against MDC’s Chamisa, who scored 44.3 percent. Chamisa also recently rejected an offer by Mnangagwa to recognised him as the leader of the opposition in parliament. Meanwhile, Zimbabwean churches are reportedly pushing to bring President Mnangagwa and Chamisa to the negotiating table to resolve an ongoing political impasse following the country’s disputed polls in July. –
Emmerson Mnangagwa and Nelson Chamisa