MUJURU FORMS HER OWN COALITION | National People’s Party (NPP) leader Joice Mujuru yesterday formed her own coalition dubbed People’s Rainbow Coalition with three other parties ahead of the 2018 harmonised election.
Her other partners are the splinter People’s Democratic Party splinter group led by Lucia Matibenga, Zimbabweans United for Democracy Party led by Farai Mbira and the Democratic Assembly for Restoration and Empowerment leader Gilbert Dzikiti.
The coalition is a direct counter to the MDC Alliance led by MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai which Mujuru and her partners refused to be part of over a litany of issues, chief among them its name.
This brings to three opposition coalitions for the 2018 elections, namely Coalition for Democrats (CODE), People’s Rainbow Coalition and MDC Alliance.
Speaker after speaker at the pre-launch ceremony held at Mujuru’s Rylance Farm in Borrowdale spoke glowingly of the former Vice-President’s character, saying she was the rightful candidate to topple President Robert Mugabe from power.
In a direct attack on the MDC Alliance, the speakers said it was prudent to use a different name altogether so as to avoid conflict of interest and swallowing of their identities.
Mujuru, who was kicked out of Zanu PF in 2015 for allegedly plotting to topple Mugabe, in her acceptance speech, said she was ready to lead.
“It is through this vision of oneness that I now humbly accept my nomination as the presidential candidate of the People’s Rainbow Coalition for the 2018 elections. It is the first time that a major political formation has nominated a woman for presidential candidacy in Zimbabwe,” Mujuru said.
“The responsibility that you have entrusted in me must see us through this historic moment of unprecedented crisis in our country. Let me express my greatest appreciation and humbleness to lead under the guidance of the wishes of the people.”
The NPP leader said she wanted to restore hope in the country while focusing on policies that promoted engagement.
Mujuru said Zimbabwe had witnessed a negation of the values of the armed struggle which they aspired to in order to become a truly free, prosperous and inclusive society where people’s dignity was restored.
“More than anything else, I want my candidacy to restore hope and bring opportunities in this age of desperation and cynicism,” she said.
“I want my candidacy to unify our country and our people. I also want my candidacy to renew our sense of purpose and to usher in a new era of inclusive economy, social progress and sustained development.”
Mujuru added: “As you may be aware, for quite some time our country has been blighted by a myriad of social, political and economic plagues that have shaken the very foundation of our democratic pillars for which a painful and protracted war had to be executed and won.”
She said focus now was on the current voter registration exercise.
Mujuru said they would urgently embark on a massive voter registration campaign targeting both local Zimbabweans and those in the Diaspora.
Both Dzikiti and Mbira, formerly with CODE, expressed confidence that their new coalition would give the country an alternative for the elections.
PDP secretary-general Gorden Moyo, who led the breakaway from Tendai Biti, said every seat in the coalition was vacant and the most popular candidate will be allowed to represent the grouping.
Moyo together with the current PDP faction leader Lucia Matibenga described their coalition as more genuine and representative of people’s needs.
The pair vehemently refused to join the MDC Alliance.