HARARE – Zimbabwe’s main opposition leader Nelson Chamisa says as the continent commemorates Africa Day, people must remember that “our beloved continent does not need strongmen. It needs strong institutions”.
Chamisa said this is his Road to Victory message for this week, in which he emphasized that Africa needs a new breed of leadership, a caring stewardship with innovative ideas to turn the continent around.
Africa today commemorates the founding of the African Union on 25 May 1963. It was then known as the Organisation of African Unity.
Chamisa, who is contesting 75-year-old Emmerson Mnangagwa of the Zimbabwe African Union-Patriotic Front in the coming elections, said several African countries including Ghana, Mozambique and Rwanda have made significant strides in improving the lives of their people.
“Zimbabwe needs to join this brave march alongside other progressive African countries. Sadly, that is not the case in our country because of the inept and incompetent leadership on the wheel of government,” he said.
Chamisa, who recently turned 40, said: “We need to steer Zimbabwe towards meeting the African Union’s Agenda 2063. Only a vibrant and dynamic leadership can put in place a prudent framework for economic transformation and that needs a young leadership with a stake in the country in the next 50 years.”
Agenda 2063 is a strategic framework for the socio-economic transformation of the continent over the next 50 years.
“As we commemorate this year’s Africa day, Zimbabwe needs to join this new era of Afro-optimism by laying the ground for an economy that can grow, attract investment and create jobs for the millions of the unemployed roaming the streets of our continent,” Chamisa said.
“We should put in place robust infrastructure and build on this Afro-optimism to poise our continent as an economic giant of the future. Given Africa’s natural resource base and rich human capital, there is no reason why our beloved continent is lagging behind big economies like the United States and China.
“Yet it all begins with leadership. We are prepared to step to the plate starting in September to ensure that Zimbabwe joins other countries on the continent that are making huge strides in building strong economies and improving the lives of the people,” he said.
Chamisa is currently in Matebeleland South where his message is anchored on the tripod pillars of transformation, opportunities and prosperity.
He is also focusing on rural areas, which have been previously considered ZANU-PF strongholds, where he is promising massive transformation and upliftment of the people through the party’s DURA programme, which stands for Development and Urbanisation of Rural Areas.