by Anesu Pedzisayi
“However, in every cloud there is a silver line, Minister Coventry has been the first one to produce positive news in Mnangagwa’s cabinet. It is indeed great news, that she will soon become a parent,” Nkululeko Sibanda.
I had to read twice, thrice, that particular statement from Nelson Chamisa’s spokesperson, trying hard not to be offended or be appalled by such misogynist sentiments, which leave one wondering what other status the MDC Alliance Party accords women, except that of childbearing and trophy scoring.
I was offended on behalf of Minister Kirsty Coventry and every other woman, who in this generation, 21st century to be specific, have to endure men who still throw around such derogatory and sexist remarks, in a bid to scrape for political relevance. What is worse, those remarks were made on a woman who, in her outstanding showmanship, has on several occasions, flown the Zimbabwe’s flag high and made impact on the country’s girl child. On the other hand the men who are making such remarks have nothing to show but are notorious for calling for sanctions which wreaked people’s lives.
The misogynist behaviour that has continuously been shown by MDC Alliance defines a Party that is in the habit of indicating right and turning left. A party grimly decorated with disrespect for women, which uses the filthiest and degrading words to describe our kind. In the MDC world, women are regarded and treated as second class citizens, undeserving of any respect and kind words and the sad part is women’s organisation have been conspicuous by their silence on these matters.
Nelson Chamisa and his cohorts, continue displaying shifting inconsistencies and only acknowledge praise when it is on their own. Was in not recently that Chamisa said, if elected to lead Zimbabwe, he would include young capable people and would be non-discriminatory in his Cabinet? Has Minister Coventry not shown dedication and potential in her sporting achievements contributing towards building the Zimbabwean brand? What is more difficult to understand is the crime she has committed, against MDC Alliance in general, to be receiving constant attack, criticism, and foul mouth from these men-children?
Not only is that question relevant to Minister Coventry, but women at large. It is no secret that Chamisa, in his political career pursuance, has received support and votes from the women structures, yet, this has never moved him to be sincere in his treatment towards women.
Not a month has passed since Ministers were sworn in and taken up their duties in their respective offices, yet the opposition has taken to heavily criticising the appointees. What is more disappointing is that sarcasm is zeroed in on matters that are personal and irrelevant to nation building and the task at hand.
MDC Alliance will go down in Zimbabwean history as a sexist party of all times, where women are brutalised, side-lined and verbally abused. It’s a party where women are seen as trophies and or accolades, deserving none but public ridicule and jest.
After all is said and done, MDC Alliance ‘supposed goal ricocheted into its own net,’ for now and the times ahead, they will be remembered for denigrating women and choosing to attack “the weak and vulnerable” all for political grandstanding. Frankly, there was nothing comic in Sibanda’s sentiments if ever he meant it as a joke, but they are demeaning, discriminatory and sexist.
Sexist remarks should stop and women should be given the respect and honour they deserve. Political grandstanding should not be realised at the expense of women, who after all, if we are to be political, constitute the biggest percentage of registered voters. At one time, sooner or later, history will judge the Alliance harshly.