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Chamisa’s strategic ambiguity vs Tshabangu’s lawfare: Whose side is GOD on?

The past few weeks have been pregnant with intrigues from the chaos in the CCC. The CCC’s main supporters aligned to Nelson Chamisa allege foul play from “perceived” enemies of the struggle who are using Sengezo Tshabangu as their forward man apparently with aid from ZANU PF.

There are even worse allegations that Tendai Biti and Welshman Ncube could be having a hand in it, although TB has refuted this.

On the other hand, the few known keyboard warriors siding with Sengezo Tshabangu, the so-called Interim SG of the CCC, allege that Chamisa’s sans constitution CCC is unacceptable. Tshabangu or not, this current situation was bound to happen.

That the party is now imploding puts to the test Chamisa’s Strategic Ambiguity doctrine and questions whether “God is In It after All” when pitted against even the most rudimentary of basic legal challenges like the one by the now infamous Tshabangu.

The last court case in which the High Court Judge Munamato Mutevedzi confirmed the dismissal of the sacked MPs was instructive.

While the judge was seemingly on the offensive against the CCC and the CCC itself lamented that the High Court had passed a “biased judgement,” it must be appreciated that any right-thinking person would have asked the same questions posed by the judge.

The contention here is that Tshabangu is not the problem. The problem lies within the Strategic Ambiguity doctrine of the CCC.

Of the useless and inadmissible Chamisa letters

The leader of the CCC having produced a not so brilliant doctrine coined Strategic Ambiguity to run the CCC without a constitution and subsequently structures knew in the back of his mind a “Tshabangu” attack was always going to lurk in the wood works.

That letter written to the Parliament of Zimbabwe reportedly by Chamisa on 11 September 2023 is proof that he and his party were always scared and knew something like this would happen. The evidence is there for everyone to see.

How does a whole political party ignore basic principles of government bureaucracy?

The HC judge then went on to deal a blow to the whole Strategic Ambiguity doctrine with a simple question. The Judge asked that if there was any seriousness to the alleged Chamisa letter, why was it then delivered to Parliament on 5 October, 2 days after Tshabangu’s court case had been filed.

If this was not a clutching at straws – knee jerk strategy hoping on the Gods to do some miracle then I do not know what it was. That the judge said the letters purportedly from Chamisa were useless and inadmissible in the case is also instructive.

That the people in the CCC tried to run with the dismissed Chamisa letter and purport that it had been delivered before the court case reveals an obvious lack of knowledge of how governance systems work.

Parliament has a simple method of receiving and dispatching correspondence. The fact that the CCC did not realize that they could be caught pants down on such a simple matter reveals characters who are rash, carefree and simplistic in their thinking and strategizing.

It is embarrassing even. For a shadow Government, this display of incompetence and lack of understanding of basic administrative procedures is unparalleled.

So, the Senate President is now a by–the-way kind of institution that you carbon copy communications?

The next issue raised by the Judge was the fact that the same alleged letter written to Parliament was carbon copied to the President of the Senate. It was as if the two bodies are one and the other has influence and leverage on the other and yet they operate for one good but separately.

The CCC strategists did not see this simple matter as important in their fight against Thsabangu or any lawfare potentially waged by anyone against them.

The judge was explicit with his sharp tongue and pen and noted that the whole defense demonstrated ‘tardiness’. It would not be remiss for one to attribute “the tardiness” to an overall tardy ethic on the whole Strategic Ambiguity doctrine.

One who wants to govern a country cannot do so without exhibiting expertise in managing his own party.

The big question that has been asked by many since the whole Strategic Ambiguity doctrine started was how it is possible that a serious political party vying to run a whole country cannot govern itself by a constitution.

The whole defense made by the CCC that part of it was to fend off infiltration by supposed ruling party and intelligence operatives is neither here nor there. While the allegations could be true, the idea smacks of a primitive way of dealing with challenges.

If one cannot trust one’s own systems in a political party how much more would they be able to defend such attacks at a national level. It is unheard of and does not make sense.

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Using ZANU PF as a scapegoat for one’s own internal struggles.

The judge even had some advice to give to Chamisa and the CCC. Some will argue that it was not solicited and thus unnecessary but what is important is the trend whereby the CCC keeps wanting to see ghosts in other people but failing to introspect or even acknowledge that their strategy is full of open holes that can be used by any Tshabangu.

In hindsight, one would not be far from the truth in pointing out that perhaps Chamisa lacked a clear strategy to deal with internal party dynamics and power struggles and this is what motivated the formation of the structureless and sans constitution CCC leading to the disaster of recalls now personified by Tshabangu.

The recalls are not a new phenomenon with this lot, so why are they not learning?

The Judge went on to ask whether the CCC party and its leader had learned any lessons from the past recall cases. He adduced that the cases had not made him and his party any wiser. None of the Judge’s business really but the point was made, nevertheless.

For example, after writing to Parliament, the CCC could not show any correspondence that had been directed to him from Parliament acknowledging that he was the leader of the CCC.

Unbridled deference to a Political Man of God or the beginning of Cultism in the CCC?

The Tshabangu case also revealed a cohort of CCC officials who exhibited unbridled deference to Chamisa without questioning a lot of issues. Among all the sacked MPs none of them saw any problems with the letters and that their strength in court even a kangaroo one would be weak.

The lawyers who represented the CCC did not see or question this. It would be a tragedy of unmeasured proportions if Chamisa wanted to take the position on this path of unquestioned policies and decisions.

Among other prominent opposition leaders, Tendai Biti has noted this and argued that he has “challenges and reservations about our identity, structural, strategic and procedural polity.” Let those who have ears hear this indictment on Chamisa’s disastrous Strategic Ambiguity doctrine.

The idea of seeing shadows and enemies in everyone will not work.

Another point made by the Judge was that in the end, the CCC noted that they did not have any cause of acting against the ZEC or Parliament.

One would then wonder if in the capricious nature of the Strategic Ambiguity doctrine and its deployment, the recalled CCC MPs and their lawyers all got blinded and saw imaginary enemies in a bambazonke fashion. This cannot be right.

To make matters worse, the uncalled-for insults and use of inflammatory language in the court challenge was hilarious at the least and at most comical, exhibiting some level of political and legal immaturity in the end. The Judge even called the disparaging lingo “infantile”. Anyway, so much of that.

Tshabangu or not – this implosion was inevitable because of the vacuous nature of the Strategic Ambiguity doctrine.

At the end of the day, one must grapple with the fact that the Tshabangu debacle was going to unravel in the CCC with or without Tshabangu. It is also important to note that the idea of continuously wanting to blame ZANU PF for all the mishaps in the CCC is rather too pedestrian and does not hold water.

Furthermore, the almost crazy pronouncements that the CCC does not know Tshabangu are preposterous and an attempt to take people for fools.

The strategic blunders made at Chamisa’s level, the CCC’S defense team and the parties to the legal case also exhibit wild hallucinatory behavior of people who want to cry wolf and play victim at every turn.

That the same party runs to the courts which they allege are captured to deal with their legal issues shows a confused entity. To argue post facto that they knew such a decision would be given also shows insincere behavior.

Strategic Ambiguity is akin to multiplying a whole number by zero and the answer is zero.

The CCC and Chamisa need to come to a reckoning that through the Strategic Ambiguity doctrine they gave birth to the Tshabangu phenomenon. If not this Tshabangu, another one will still come out of the cracks.

The supposed infiltration that they tried so dismally to forestall or prevent is within the party now. In any normal society, such poor strategies would have seen heads rolling. However, because this is Zimbabwe, no one wants to hold anybody accountable and thus we say aluta continua.

The Gods cannot be in such a Strategically Ambiguous cause. It cannot happen. The law of Tshabangu has set the precedence of chaos and it shall be so for the next 5 years of this Parliament, Local Government and Senate.

Zimbabwe needs an opposition and ruling political party that articulates issues of “constitutionalism, the rule of law, transparency, openness and collective leadership” as Tendai Biti notes in his letter.

There is nothing strategic or ambiguous or strategically ambiguous about not having a party constitution or a clear leadership structure in a political party. Either you are strategic or you are ambiguous and those two things are worlds apart.

Any attempt to bring the two concepts together especially in the case of the issues raised against the CCC and Chamisa is akin to multiplying any number by zero. That is basic mathematics.

You can follow Tendai Chabvuta on his blog