In a strategic move to rescue the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) from imminent demise under Nelson Chamisa's leadership, former CCC Harare Mayor, Jacob Mafume has reportedly joined hands with the ousted old guard.
According to a credible source, Mafume's move through a movement called Chinhu Chedu ichi is hoping to rescue the party from what he perceives as a potential demise under Chamisa's leadership.
The source sheds light on Mafume's outreach to key members of the ousted old guard, such as Charlton Hwende, Happymore Chidziva and Wellington Chikombo, who found themselves marginalized and dismissed by Chamisa in favour of his loyalists.
“Mafume has been troubled by the manner in which Chamisa has been steering CCC into troubled waters. Mafume initiated contact with the old guard, rallying them under the banner of 'Chinhu Chedu Ichi' in a collective effort to counter what he perceives as a dilution of CCC's democratic ethos.
“Mafume is disheartened by Chamisa's apparent transformation of CCC into his personal kitchen cabinet. He reached out to the old guard because he believes the party is being steered away from its democratic foundations as he believed they were in the same boat on those sentiments,” said the source.
Additionally, one of Mafume's primary concerns, as revealed by the source, is how he was removed from the mayoral position by Chamisa.
“The decision of his removal from the Mayoral position, according to Mafume, was not only undemocratic but also detrimental to the overall health of the party. Mafume believes the party is being run into the ground under Chamisa's watch, and decisive action is necessary to safeguard CCC from further deterioration. Mafume was also displeased by the appointment of Lovejoy Chitengu, a move he argued was driven by personal interests rather than democratic principles,” said the source.
Futhermore, the source highlighted Mafume's dissatisfaction with Chamisa's silence regarding the incarcerated Job Sikhala.
"Mafume expressed dismay at Chamisa's lack of vocal advocacy for Sikhala, suggesting that Chamisa's silence implies a prioritization of personal interests over the well-being of party members," he said.
Mafume is not alone in his concerns, with Sengezo Tshabangu’s recent recalls evidencing growing factionalism within the CCC as members, particularly the old guard, being dissatisfied with Chamisa's leadership. As the CCC grapples with internal strife, Mafume's decision to join hands with the ousted old guard underscores the gravity of the situation. Whether this alliance will bring about positive change or exacerbate existing tensions remains uncertain.