Charamba Struggles To Ignore Kasukuwere
11 June 2023
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By Farai D Hove | The political landscape of Zimbabwe has long been dominated by two major figures: Emmerson Mnangagwa and Saviour Kasukuwere. While Mnangagwa currently holds the presidency, Kasukuwere, a prominent opposition figure, has emerged as a formidable force that cannot be ignored. In this article, we will analyze the reasons why Kasukuwere poses a significant challenge to Mnangagwa’s leadership and why he cannot be disregarded in Zimbabwean politics.

Resilience and Experience:

Saviour Kasukuwere has shown tremendous resilience in the face of adversity throughout his political career. He has weathered political storms and emerged as a key opposition figure, earning the nickname “Tyson” for his ability to bounce back. His experience in various government positions, including Minister of Local Government and Minister of Youth Development, has provided him with deep insights into the inner workings of Zimbabwe’s political system.

Popularity and Grassroots Support:

Kasukuwere enjoys considerable popularity and grassroots support, especially among the youth in Zimbabwe. His charismatic personality and ability to connect with ordinary citizens have won him a loyal following. Kasukuwere’s emphasis on economic empowerment and social justice resonates with a large segment of the population that has been affected by the country’s economic challenges. This support base gives him a strong foundation from which to challenge Mnangagwa’s rule.

Stance Against Corruption:

Corruption has long plagued Zimbabwe’s political landscape, contributing to its economic woes. Kasukuwere has positioned himself as a staunch anti-corruption advocate, calling for transparency and accountability in government. His commitment to fighting corruption has struck a chord with the Zimbabwean population, who view it as a necessary step towards rebuilding the country’s economy and restoring public trust. This stance sets Kasukuwere apart from Mnangagwa, whose administration has faced criticism for not doing enough to combat corruption.

Mobilization and Organizational Skills:

Kasukuwere has demonstrated exceptional mobilization and organizational skills, which have been crucial in building a strong opposition movement. Through his political party, the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF), he has established a robust network of supporters across the country. This infrastructure enables him to rally people and coordinate political campaigns effectively. Kasukuwere’s ability to mobilize the masses poses a significant threat to Mnangagwa’s leadership, as it undermines the ruling party’s control over the electorate.

International Recognition:

Kasukuwere has gained international recognition as a prominent opposition figure. His efforts to challenge Mnangagwa’s government and advocate for democratic reforms have caught the attention of the international community. This recognition strengthens Kasukuwere’s position, as it puts pressure on Mnangagwa’s administration to address the concerns raised by the opposition leader. The support from international actors and organizations further amplifies Kasukuwere’s voice and increases his credibility on the global stage.

Saviour Kasukuwere’s resilience, popularity, anti-corruption stance, mobilization skills, and international recognition make him a formidable challenger to Emmerson Mnangagwa’s leadership in Zimbabwe. His ability to connect with the people and mobilize grassroots support has the potential to disrupt the political landscape. As Kasukuwere continues to build momentum, it is evident that he cannot be ignored, and his presence in challenging Mnangagwa will shape the future of Zimbabwean politics.

Below is George Charamba’s article on Saturday
Kasukuwere, we are told, has now thrown his hat in the ring. He might very well have, including throwing in his coxcombical image in which he feigns some mock-presidential poise.

This has caused some considerable stir in the social media, but only!

We are still to meet a similar stir in the work-a-day world where politics and politicians are made and unmade.

Interestingly, debate on social media is not on or about his chances. Rather, it is on and about whose vote he is likely to split!

Which seals and immortalises his political fate as the nearly man of Zimbabwe’s political contest. Again interestingly, some supporters in the ruling party and the opposition alike are angry with him, ironically for the same fears his ordained role seem to trigger!

He will eat into ED’s vote, a few impressionable ones in the ruling party opine; he will divide opposition vote thus undermining Chamisa, many in the opposition think and fear.

Between both camps is no Chinese wall! For both roles he needs no schizophrenia. Not even a gossamer veil!

Bragging about negativity capability

What is my view about him? Well, as a candidate his significance and value hardly surpasses a farthing which cannot procure even an unregistered voter or a spoilt ballot paper.

No serious politician should waste time on him, any more than he does on himself. His forlorn hope is to gain significance by causing the authorities to wave a charge sheet in his face.

Through such a subterfuge he hopes to claim “negative capability”, to adapt the phrase of the Nineteenth Century Romantic poet, John Keats. It then allows him to join US’s Oliver North of the CIA Contra Scandal in bragging about himself “as the President Zimbabwe would not have”!

Hoping for a Mutambara moment

His only other alternative significance is to hope for a Mutambara moment in the opposition: the hope of a small outsider whose chances are magnified by stiff rifts inside.

I mean it needs no divination to predict that after August 23, Chamisa’s “thing” will be a fractious mess sure to devour its erstwhile leader, with none of the multitudinous contenders to the throne ever prevailing.

In that Mutambara role, Kasukuwere might meet King Arthur and his green knights!

The model might just turn out to be the real opponent!

Chamisa’s Double

Perhaps what is worth more than a farthing is reading Saviour’s aspirations.

Fortunately his aspirations provide fascinating hagiography, which is to say a text in human form.

The first two paragraphs have Walter Mzembi and Sybeth Musengezi as incarnates. This semantic side of Kasukuwere makes him Chamisa’s double.

Through both characters, Saviour, like King Arthur, has thrown his weight behind Chamisa. Both characters are his alter ego. His offering himself as a separate Presidential candidate does not distract this role; rather, is calculated to soften Zanu PF for Chamisa by diving its vote.

He hopes to be repaid for it, thus becoming yet another variegated patch on Chamisa’s multicoloured Scottish-skirt party.

Playing red herring for Chamisa

The other hagiography would have come in the form and persons of Dr Simba Makoni and Dr Joice Mujuru had it not been for ED’s Big-Zanu PF, conciliatory tent politics. With both now inside and behind President ED’s candidature, the remnant, tattered facsimile of that model is the bitter Ibbotson Joseph, a.k.a. Ibbo Mandaza.

That role makes Saviour play the distracting role of a red herring to Zanu PF’s campaign focus, assuming Zanu PF has forgotten bitter lessons of 2008.

Such a role does not need prior understanding between Kasukuwere and Chamisa. It just needs to happen, with gains accruing to Chamisa as coming fortuitously and inadvertently.

Whether it is the Mutambara or Mavambo model, one outcome is dead certain: Hamlet, the main actor embraces the fate of all tragic heroes in a Shakespearean drama. In the end he dies, much like corporeal Makoni and Mutambara soon after and at the conclusion of GNU respectively.

The only issue is in whose hands does he finally meet his death! Whether death of a Double or a Red Herring, let the world of humans decide.

The issue is that both deaths have been suffered before, making Kasukuwere him a political cliché in human form, quintessentially bereft of any originality, subjectivity or expressive force. I am only a braying donkey!