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To claim Chamisa is not in any form of danger would be naïve – Siniwa

By Clinton Siniwa

The MDC Alliance released a statement that its president Nelson Chamisa had been shot at by ZANU PF thugs on 19 October 2021 in Mutare. A similar incident took place the preceding week in Masvingo province.

Zanu PF supporters armed with burning logs and stones attacked MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa's advance team in the Charumbira area of Masvingo demanding that he remove sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe over government disrespect of human rights and rampant corruption.
Zanu PF supporters armed with burning logs and stones attacked MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa’s advance team in the Charumbira area of Masvingo demanding that he remove sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe over government disrespect of human rights and rampant corruption.

Some political analysts have dismissed these claims as they allege the damage to Chamisa’s vehicle was not from gunshots. The so-called neutral political analysts claim gunshots would have damaged the vehicle only in a particular way.

It is important to keep in mind that damage by firearms depending on the specifications of the firearm itself and missile used, distance and the surface of the target can lead to many different outcomes.

Furthermore, projectiles impacting on moving objects may have different outcomes depending on velocity, trajectory and angle of impact.

Considering these many variables, the claims of the MDC Alliance must not be dismissed hastily without good cause.

As the pundits of all things except their real problems, Zimbabweans are excellent at analysing things they know absolutely nothing about. In social circles certain people can ascertain a person’s health, wealth and personal affairs by visual assessment alone.

It is only Zimbabweans who will argue with a trained subject matter expert because of an unverified article they read on social media.

In this matter some analysts are turning out to be newly minted experts in ballistics and firearms. I doubt if some of these ballistic experts of ours have ever held a real firearm in their hands, let alone discharge one! To validate this matter and other claims of the MDC Alliance, we can always look to the past as history has a tendency of repeating itself.

It is common knowledge that the late Vice President Dr Nkomo fled the country in 1983 and went to the UK as his life was in danger from ZANU PF. As the then leader of ZAPU, Dr Nkomo and his party were suffering a massive wave of political violence from ZANU PF which led to the loss of over 20,000 lives during Gukurahundi.

To this very day some people deny that the Gukurahundi genocide ever took place. Today the same people are denying that Chamisa and the MDC Alliance are under attack. Can we believe them in all honesty?

The late former Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai yet again fled to Botswana in 2008 as ZANU PF was baying for his blood during the elections run off. His party the MDC was facing yet again a wave of political violence from ZANU PF.

This was the second genocide to take place in Zimbabwe as hundreds of MDC supporters were abducted and killed. Over 2,500 people were treated in hospitals for injuries sustained from political violence.

The above events show a clear pattern emerging. Firstly, anyone that leads any opposition against ZANU PF will be in danger of losing their life. This is the reason why Dr Nkomo and Tsvangirai fled the country in rather unflattering circumstances. To claim that Nelson Chamisa as leader of the MDC Alliance is not in any form of danger would be naïve at best.

Even the current leader of government Mnangagwa himself fled the country pre-coup in 2017 when the late President Mugabe knew about his plot to seize power. Mnangagwa knew that his life was in danger. And he fled. The infamous Minister Mandi Chimene even labelled him a ‘border jumper’ at a rally in Harare.

The precedence of danger and threat to life is there and it is real today as it has been in the past. We all remember Mugabe boasting about the 99 degrees of violence that he claimed his party had. We all know about the abduction of Itai Dzamara. The gruesome murder of Ndira and many other accounts I cannot name here for the sake of practicality.

ZANU PF has always employed violence as its weapon of choice against its opponents. The same brutal violence that was given to ZAPU is the same that has been unleashed against the MDC even to date. This simple acid test will show you the difference between the Mwonzora led MDC T and Chamisa led MDC Alliance. The support that the Mwonzora MDC receives from the police and government is a clear sign of the nature of its relationship with the ruling party.

The plan to destroy genuine political opposition is an attempt by ZANU PF to preserve its grip on power. They want to neuter the MDC Alliance like they did to ZAPU in the 80’s. The decision makers of the ruling party fail to understand that just as Tsvangirai was not their problem, Chamisa too is not their problem. Rather it is what he represents. He represents an idea of political change.

Zimbabweans want change.

Even those in rural areas too. The hunger for change cannot be stopped.

I hear even the soldiers want change too. Those in the barracks are now saying Ngaapinde hake mukomana!

Clinton Siniwa is a UK based Chartered Accountant. You can engage with him on Twitter @ClintSiniwa

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