Ncube-Led CCC Faction Secures Political Parties Act Funding

Sengezo Tshabangu
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HARARE – The Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) faction led by Professor Welshman Ncube has emerged victorious in the battle to secure the opposition party’s share of Government funds allocated under the Political Parties (Finance) Act.

For months, multiple CCC factions had lobbied Justice, Legal, and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ziyambi Ziyambi to deposit the funds into their respective bank accounts. Rival factions, including those led by Jameson Timba and Promise Mkwananzi, had also approached the Government, each claiming legitimacy as the party’s leaders.

Last week, Professor Ncube’s faction was confirmed as the bona fide recipients after the group’s secretary-general, Senator Sengezo Tshabangu, was appointed leader of the opposition in Parliament.

This appointment was a decisive factor in the faction’s claim to the funds. Subsequently, Speaker of the National Assembly Advocate Jacob Mudenda rescinded the appointments of CCC legislators to various parliamentary committees, citing procedural issues with their secondment by Timba.

Minister Ziyambi, in an interview with The Sunday Mail, stated that the funds would be disbursed soon. “There were delays because the Minister of Finance (Economic Development and Investment Promotion, Professor Mthuli Ncube) was not available. Once the processes have been completed, we will disburse the funds soon,” he said. Ziyambi clarified that the recipient faction was determined based on the majority of members in Parliament.

Under the Political Parties (Finance) Act, only parties that secure at least 5% of the total votes cast in the general election qualify for state funding. This includes the ruling ZANU PF and the CCC. The allocation is proportional to the number of National Assembly seats secured in the previous election.

Constitutional law expert Professor Lovemore Madhuku explained that these funds are disbursed annually over five years. “They ought to be disbursed every Government financial year and should be disbursed within the budget cycle. The funding is approved by Parliament and must be allocated within each budget cycle,” he said.

The CCC has faced significant internal turmoil, particularly since January when its leader, Nelson Chamisa, quit the party amid ongoing infighting. This departure led to the emergence of multiple factions, each claiming legitimacy.

The Political Parties (Finance) Act stipulates that eligible parties receive funding annually based on the proportion of votes they received in the most recent general election. The Act mandates the Minister responsible for finance to publish the total amount of money appropriated for all political parties and the specific amounts for each party within 30 days of the financial year’s start.

This recent resolution marks a significant moment for the CCC, potentially stabilizing the faction led by Ncube and providing them with the financial resources needed to strengthen their political activities.