In unexpected turn of events, the Movement for Democratic Change Alliance led by Nelson Chamisa is reportedly engaging President Emmerson Mnangangwa behind the scenes.
A reliable source close to the talks told this publication that Chamisa is reportedly negotiating for the official opposition leader position, with full state benefits. The source said that Chamisa is being advised by veteran Kenya politician Raila Odinga to take up the position. When Mnangangwa took power after the 2018 elections, he told the media when in New York that he was willing to accommodate Chamisa in an official capacity, modelled along the British parliamentary system.
The deal, if reached, could be a win for the two adversaries. Mnangagwa is currently presiding an economy on free fall, rampant corruption allegations involving his inner circle and family members and a serious crack down on perceived dissenters. A deal with Chamisa will present Mnangagwa as accommodating and will definitely be looked upon positively by the international community. Chamisa, on the other hand, is facing his own challenges, with the implosion of his party and subsequently being chased away from Harvest House by a faction led by Thokozani Khupe.
Chamisa’s Alliance is currently operating form unknown location and has had key allies like Charlton Hwende been withdrawn from parliament by Khupe. An arrangement with Mnangagwa will guarantee the young leader a permanent future in the Zimbabwe political landscape. However, the move, should it proceed, will face stiff challengers from hardliners in his camp who wish to erase any remnants of Zanu pf in government.
According to the same source, Mnangagwa wants to Chamisa to sever all ties with exiled G40 kingpins like Professor Jonathan Moyo, Walter Mzembi and Saviour Kasukuwere. Chamisa is reportedly in constant communication with the former Zanu members, and is also reportedly very close with former First Lady, Grace Mugabe, who is fiercely anti Mnangagwa. The source stated that the talks are in their early stages, and are being conducted via emissaries, and the both men have not met or communicated directly as yet. There are many sticking points and the source stated that extremists from both sides will likely put spanners into the works.
When reached for a comment, Acting Zanu Spokesman Patrick Chinamasa said he wasnt aware of such talks, before hanging up. Efforts to get a comment from MDC spokesperson Fadzayi Mahere were fruitless.