BULAWAYO – Nelson Chamisa, the leader of the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC), launched the party’s first manifesto in preparation for the August 23 elections at a serene lodge in Bulawayo’s Matsheumhlope suburb on Tuesday night.
Chamisa, a lawyer and pastor, wove his faith into the party’s blueprint, emphasizing the significance of God’s role in the nation’s affairs.
In a 100-page manifesto titled ‘A New Great Zimbabwe,’ Chamisa positioned his party’s philosophy with divine centrality, stating, “The citizens movement’s philosophy places God first and citizens at the centre.”
Throughout the document, references to the Almighty abound, reinforcing the party’s focus on faith and its potential role in reshaping the country’s political landscape.
Chamisa addressed the audience, asserting, “The Maker needs to be the foundation of the nation. When God is at the centre, we will be one… Let’s be all under God.”
This theme echoed through major sections of the manifesto, with Bible verses prefacing critical points.
The CCC’s emphasis on faith also extended to its 20-point economic and political plan for the first 100 days of a potential CCC government.
While infused with religious references, the manifesto outlines an ambitious agenda encompassing diverse sectors.
The CCC’s plan includes freeing political prisoners, addressing education system concerns by offering decent salaries, and ensuring free primary education and primary healthcare.
Economic stability is a priority, including the abolition of the Zimbabwe dollar and tough measures against corruption.
The manifesto’s infrastructure rehabilitation strategy is intended to be funded by mineral proceeds, with attention to revitalizing state-owned enterprises.
The CCC emphasizes restoring trust in the government, reducing border charges, combating drug cartels, and ending land barons’ influence.
The plan also outlines measures to repeal oppressive legislation and introduce e-government platforms for streamlined services.
Chamisa stressed a moral dimension in his plan, aiming to restore “leadership values, manners, and ethics.”
He highlighted the importance of an accessible and engaged presidency, stating, “We want to have a president who comes to parliament to answer questions, say twice every year, to answer pertinent issues not a president who is always on planes or drinking whisky.”
The CCC was established in March 2022 after Chamisa abandoned the Movement for Democratic Change’s name due to a court ruling.
Despite a campaign characterized by a lack of formal structures, Chamisa’s charismatic presence and faith-centered message have garnered strong support.
As the party seeks to challenge Zanu PF‘s four-decade rule, the infusion of faith and reform into its manifesto offers voters a distinctive alternative.
As Chamisa affirmed in the manifesto’s closing sentiment, “God is in it,” reinforcing the party’s unique message for a New Great Zimbabwe.
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