Former ZANU PF Mashonaland West chairperson Temba Mliswa said MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa made a grave miscalculation when he refused President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s “offer” to appoint him the Leader of the Opposition in Parliament.
The outspoken legislator for Norton said if Chamisa had taken up the offer, his party wouldn’t have been subjected to the current onslaught it is under. Said Mliswa:
Upon reflection, it’s unfortunate that Nelson Chamisa turned down the appointment of “Office of the Leader of the Opposition” which would’ve facilitated the establishment of the Office of the Opposition Leader, in Parliament in line with Commonwealth practices.
Had this appointment been accepted, many of the challenges currently being faced may have been thwarted through his anticipated role of oversight.
Any Govt programmes, corruption, reforms etc could’ve had due scrutiny. Sometimes it’s about staying in the game and galvanising oneself.
Look at the mayhem the opposition are in today; they’re divided. In retrospect had Chamisa accepted, imagine the progress we’d have made as a country by now? Chamisa is eloquent and a great debater and would have been a credit for the position.
However, they all refused. Funnily enough, though, many of those who buttressed this decision are now working with Thokozani Khupe.
So my question to the opposition is: Would it have been better to have accepted the post or is the current status quo the stronger position?
I personally feel the offer was a step in the right direction as a lot more could have been achieved and we could have avoided some of the issues we’re in today. I’m hoping lessons are being learnt.
However, in spite of Mliswa’s assertions, it is not clear whether President Emmerson Mnangagwa indeed offered the non-existent post to Chamisa or the report about the offer was a mere publicity stunt.
Further, Zimbabwe is not a member of the Commonwealth, having been suspended for one year, and then left the organisation at the turn of the millennium.
Mliswa added that a government of national unity was unlikely but Mnangagwa should opt for an inclusive government which will allow him to pick able people from the opposition and include them in his government.
As for Chamisa, Mliswa said he should build on the over 2 million votes he received in the 2018 elections and prepare for the 2023 polls.