Chamisa defends sexist comment

Nelson Chamisa, the new leader of the opposition Movement For Democratic Change (MDC) gestures as he addresses a news conference in Harare, Zimbabwe, February 23, 2018. REUTERS/Philimon Bulawayo

LONDON – Zimbabwe’s opposition leader has told the BBC he struggles to see what he did wrong after offering to marry his 18-year-old sister to President Emmerson Mnangagwa if he won 5% of the vote.

Nelson Chamisa, who took over leadership of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) earlier this year, came under fire for the comments caught on camera.

Speaking in Shona, he said he was happy to make the bet “because I know it won’t happen”.

But speaking to the BBC’s Newsday programme, he dismissed the accusation of sexism, which have made headlines in his home country:

What’s disrespectful? She is the one who is looking for a husband. She is my sister, there is no sexism there. As far as I am concerned, it is part of our culture. When your sister is about to get married, as a brother you must help her.”

He further said the complaints were coming from “political detractors” during what he described as “the madness season”.

Hear what else he had to say here:

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