THE embattled President of the Zimbabwe Chief’s Council Chief Fortune Charumbira has denied claims that he urged CCC leader Nelson Chamisa and President Emmerson Mnangagwa to join hands and form a Government of National Unity (GNU).
Speaking to The Herald, Charumbira said contrary to reports on social media that he pleaded with Chamisa and Mnangagwa to consider foregoing this year’s elections in favour of a GNU, he called for unity among all Zimbabweans irrespective of political differences. He said:
Of course, it is utter rubbish that I appealed to (Mr) Chamisa to join President Mnangagwa in a GNU for whatever reason including to avoid elections due this year.
Of course, nothing can be further from the truth because the unity I was talking about was the unity of all Zimbabweans to pull and push in the same direction irrespective of political differences and who is in power.
I was not talking about the unity of political parties that they must join to form a Government, no!
It was unity to cast aside political differences and come up with a single agenda to develop Zimbabwe in peace and harmony without necessarily collapsing different political parties.
I said we must unite and contest elections in harmony and peace and this was predicated on (Mr) Chamisa who earlier on in his speech had said President Mnangagwa is his brother.
I told (Mr) Chamisa that since he openly conceded on his own during his own speech before I spoke that President Mnangagwa is his brother, why then doesn’t he visit him at State House?
Pay a courtesy call on him as the President and big brother and drink tea together to nourish harmony, peace and oneness in our country. I never talked about GNU as purported.
Charumbira was alleged to have made the “GNU” remarks at Mbetu Village in Charumbira communal lands on Sunday where he was part of the mourners at the burial of Mbuya Mafume, who is mother to Harare Mayor Jacob Mafume (CCC).
Chief Charumbira is related to the Mafumes through a family marriage.
He attended the funeral as a relative and also in his capacity as a traditional leader of the area.
Chamisa and other CCC leaders, including MPs and councillors and party members, attended the funeral.
Charumbira also rubbished claims that he was pushing for a Karanga hegemony in Zimbabwe when he said Chamisa should not challenge his “homeboy”, Mnangagwa. He said:
In the run-up to the 2018 harmonised elections, I approached (Mr) Chamisa and asked him why he was challenging his homeboy (President Mnangagwa) in an election instead of respecting him as the elder brother and let him run his race.
I was saying this as a person who is familiar with both of them by virtue of my position as chief and on Sunday again I was merely repeating the same message I first have him in 2018.
I never said we should forego this year’s elections for a GNU why would I say that when processes are already underway to hold polls as constitutionally mandated?
I was only highlighting that election outcomes should not be the basis of not working in unison to grow our country as one people with a shared past and a common future.