Democracy & GovernanceNews

Chamisa to rebrand Kwekwe city

Innocent Muraiwa

Kwekwe- The President of the opposition party, Citizen Coalition for Change (CCC), Advocate Nelson Chamisa has promised to rebrand the city of Kwekwe into “The gold city”. Chamisa said this while addressing a rally held last week at Mbizo Stadium where he assured people about corrupt-free governance.

The CCC presidential candidate is on his final rallies drumming up support for his party a few days before the crunch harmonised elections to be held on the 23rd of August this year. Kwekwe is largely regarded as a stronghold of the opposition with the late Masango ‘Blackman; Matambanadzo of ZANU-PF who later defected to National Patriotic Front breaking the record by clinching Kwekwe Central. For Mbizo Constituency, opposition legislator Settlement Chikwinya has been having a good run until his recall by Douglas Mwonzora paving the way for Vongainaishe Mupereri to taste victory in the by-election of 2018, Chikwinya bounced back.

It is against this background that Kwekwe is of significance to the opposition ahead of the 2023 elections. With gold being the mainstay for economic activities following the closure of many companies, Chamisa had to strike a chord that resonate with the lived realities of people in Kwekwe hence the focus of rebranding Kwekwe through gold.

“Mining sector in Kwekwe is on its deathbed, once I am elected the President of Zimbabwe, I will make sure that Kwekwe is labeled ‘the gold city’. Industries will be restored so that people get employment. I am very bitter about the state of the environment. The ZIMASCO steel company was closed, all the mining places are manipulated by the Chinese who are not giving back to the country but rather exhausting our minerals and investing in their country. All this will end as soon as I get in power

Kwekwe should be a well-known gold processing city where gold buyers come and purchase some minerals for the development of the country. Harare should not be a city of everything, there will be powerful infrastructural development in Kwekwe since it is at the heart of the country”, said Chamisa.

Addressing the crowd at the rally, Chamisa had no kind words for corrupt leaders whom he accuse of running down the country. He promised to nip cancer in the head once he assumes the number 1 position on the land coming through the 23 August 2023 harmonised elections

“Corrupt things which occurred on the gold mafia will never happen again, those are the dirty ways of sourcing out money. We should do something that benefits the people, not the individual. Corruption deepened its roots and  is no longer uncontrollable unless the leadership that is there is removed otherwise the country is in darkness.”

“The mistake which Mukoma (my brother) Mnangagwa made is that he misconstrued the difference between a leader and a ruler. He is not leading the country but rather he is ruling it. Leadership is all about doing good to the greatest number which is then in connection with the will of the people. Violence does not solve any challenge that the country is facing.

On the same note,  Chamisa spoke about roads rehabilitation programs which he singled out as a burning issue to be rectified especially for the country to attract more tourists and investors in the country.

“Roads in Zimbabwe are in an eyesore state. There is a lot of work to be done on the road rehabilitation program. Look at Kwekwe-Gokwe road, it is potholed and there are a number of accidents that transpire almost every month. I am not happy with the loss of people’s lives due to the bad state of the roads. I strongly urge people to vote for me on 23 August 2023 so that we change the face of the country,” added Chamisa.

“Investors are also key to employment creation in Zimbabwe which the current leadership is shunning. Investors are fearful to come and do their investments due to a number of issues for example poor road networks and rigid policies which undermine their business environment.”

In an interview, a Kwekwe resident who preferred anonymity for fear of victimization had this to say,

“The city of Kwekwe is regrettably deteriorating. The ruling ZANU-PF party is manipulating the place. Artisinal miners are suffering at the hands of ZANU-PF bigwigs hence they resort to all sorts of criminal activities denting the image of Kwekwe “.

According to Tinotenda Kasiano, a Kwekwe resident, Chamisa has the potential to turn around the fortunes of the country including the Midlands Province.

“If Chamisa wins the elections, we are guaranteed positive and rapid change. The Kwekwe – Gokwe road which is in need of urgent rehabilitation, can only be attended to through the visionary leader, Nelson Chamisa.

A Kwekwe-based business person, Tongai Manjaya expressed optimism that Chamisa would bring the much anticipated and desired change.

“We are hopeful that President Nelson Chamisa will bring rapid development to the country, especially in the business sector in which most of us are crying. Raw materials are hard to find hence we depend on neighboring countries for the survival of our business,” he said.

Speaking on the sidelines of the event, the CCC aspiring Member of Parliament in Kwekwe Central, Judith Tobaiwa bemoaned the leakage of gold revenue through smuggling much to the detriment of Zimbabwe’s developmental pursuits.

“The Government of Zimbabwe had for a couple of years lied to its citizens about the restoration of ZISCO Steel company which went on the bed during the reign of the late former president Robert Gabriel Mugabe. There is no light of progress in ZANU-PF but rather there is change without change. They always heap false promises to the general public. People need change not to be treated like toys’, she thundered.

However, the aspiring ZANU -PF candidate Mbizo Constituency Vongaiishe Mupereri scoffed at Chamisa’s promises dismissing him as a puppet of the West.

“Chamisa is not a competent leader, he has no ability to control this country. It is very impossible for us to dump the country in the hands of the whites. We will never again be put under British rule, white people are very arrogant and manipulative, and the country shall remain in the hands of ZANU-PF.

“It is our duty as Zimbabwean citizens to collectively work for the success of our country. Nothing comes without hard work. Chamisa will never come and bring you money in your pockets. People should vote carefully”, said Mupereri popularly known as Igwe by ZANU-PF supporters.

In an interview with this reporter, the Programs Manager for Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition, a grouping of civil society organisations in Zimbabwe, Terrence Tendai Chitapi argued that Zimbabwe’s problems are multi-faceted stemming from a constitutional crisis.

 “I think the country faces more pertinent questions such as the constitutional crisis being brewed by ZEC and its implications on the country’s trajectory.”

Secretary General of the Kwekwe Residents and Ratepayers  Association, Alex Thomas Homela weighed in by saying that fixing the country requires collective effort amongst the people of Zim babwe.

“I do not foresee anything positive to do with the claimed ‘New Great Zimbabwe’ when Kwekwe city had long back been in the hands of the incompetent opposition parties’ councilors who could not meet the demands of the people especially on living conditions that include the availability and affordability of portable water as well as the water charges. Amongst the 32 urban councils in Zimbabwe, Kwekwe has the highest charges. The country Zimbabwe cannot be built by any external part but rather by its citizens.

“Now, I have come to understand that Zimbabwe cannot be developed overnight, if so, it will be a nightmare. The successful development of the country calls upon collective hands by its people so that there will be better hope for the economic drive of the country. During the colonial era of 1983, every black person was colonised which clearly indicates that the rule by the whites will never be friendly to us. White people are cold-blooded people who dehumanize the black race. They do not have mercy on us so accepting them back is like claiming to declare the death penalty,” charged Homela.

“The 120 000 people in the city are not happy because of the council yeárly budget which was imposed by the technocrats and policymakers especially the 2022/23 budget which heavily impacted the living conditions of the residents.

Honorable Advocate Chamisa is a party leader, not a government, I would have wanted to compete with other Presidents in the region. Zimbabwe is a great country in the region and we need visionary and wise people to build this great country”, added Homela.

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