A third way is on its way

HARARE - Amidst the pain of losing elections by MDC formations and different reactions to the results which brought back Zanu PF and President Robert Mugabe to power, our Senior Assistant Editor, Guthrie Munyuki, this week spoke to National Constitutional Assembly (NCA)  chief, Lovemore Madhuku, who reveals plans to launch a new political party while re-iterating calls to remain united and peaceful.

Below are the excerpts of the interview.

Q: Professor Lovemore Madhuku we have seen the defeat of the opposition parties in the just-ended election. In the wake of the defeats, what does the future hold for multi-party democracy in Zimbabwe?

A: The future is very bright for multi-party democracy in Zimbabwe. One must not think that the defeat of the MDCs in the just-ended election is the end of the world for the opposition. It is simply the defeat of the MDCs.

It provides good lessons for those who want to take on Zanu PF at the next elections.

So, we say very bright, because there are so many opportunities and one of the most important opportunities that has arisen is that the MDCs will now, I am sure, go back to the drawing board while other political formations will also emerge, take advantage of what they have seen happening in the just-ended election and build alternative movements.

So you should expect that in the next elections Zanu PF would be defeated. More so because we have now clearly had peaceful elections and we hope to maintain that.

And then by the next election we want to add an element to the electoral process, which is fairness.

We had a peaceful election which was not necessarily fair.

But in the next five years we will be contributing to a fair electoral process. We have peaceful now and fair process which will obviously, I am sure, lead to the defeat of Zanu PF. If Zanu PF wins, again that will have to be respected.

Q: And looking at what will lead to a fair poll in 2018, what needs to be done to make sure you succeed in the reform agenda?

A: I am sure the reform agenda is now very simple to look at. We will need to revisit the constitution in the next few years, ensuring that we take away the powers of the President more or less the control over the electoral process; the appointment of organs and so on.

But even if we were not to succeed in reducing the powers of the President we simply need now a more transparent voters’ roll than the voters’ roll that we were using in the last election and get a longer period for the registration of voters.

We must have a new voters’ roll which will now be done by Zec (Zimbabwe Electoral Commission). 

The voters’ roll all along was the responsibility of the Registrar-general. But now Zec must take over the process which is what is provided for in the Constitution. And then we must have a fresh registration.

All these things of dead people on the voters’ roll and so forth will have to be taken care of.

I am sure we must also go the electronic route. I know that there are countries which are using voters’ rolls of an electronic nature even the voting process itself will have to go via an electronic process that merely bars possibility of double voting.

I think in terms of making it fairer, you just have to deal with the voter registration and making the voters’ roll cleaner.

Q: Looking at Zanu PF’s victory in the just-ended election, by sheer numbers in Parliament, there are worries that it has returned Zimbabwe to a one-party rule, what is your take on that?

A: That is an exaggeration. When you go to an election which is based on the winner-takes-all system you always have the danger of one party dominating parliament.

So Zanu PF is not the only party in Africa or in the world that has a two thirds majority.

It’s very common with a winner-takes-all system. But it doesn’t follow that with a two thirds majority you necessarily either amend the constitution or become a one party state.

It depends with the spirit and the processes around.

They can still work very profitably with those minority parties, now it is only the MDC that is in Parliament. 

I have seen that in terms of the numbers, out of 270 members of the National Assembly, with the women quota added, you have 70 members of MDC and about 200 members of Zanu PF that is if you add Jonathan Samkange to Zanu PF.

Those 70 MDC members can be used profitably. They will be in parliamentary committees in terms of the proportionate numbers; they must be allowed to raise motions even to push proposal for Private Members bills and so on.

You can run a very effective parliament with an opposition with the size that the MDC has got at the moment. It will require skill on the part of those who are in the opposition and tolerance on the part of those who are in the majority.

Q: Do you foresee a situation where President Robert Mugabe might invite some of the defeated MDC members to form his government?

A: I don’t see that possibility. He should also not do it. It is not good for this country to have a government of a coalition.

We have seen the fruits of the inclusive government in the past four years. It (inviting MDC members) would undermine the electoral process.

People go to have elections to elect a government.

Those who were elected must govern. We want full responsibility and full accountability from those who are elected to be in government. 

We do not want to have excuses. Zanu PF must deliver, it has been elected. If it fails to deliver it must answer for that in the next election.

This country does not deserve a coalition, it does not require one.

I think we must break away from that. Let us have winners running the affairs of the State and all of us make them accountable. 2018 will be payback time. If Zanu PF does not deliver, it will be kicked out.

Q: What does Mugabe and Zanu PF victory mean to the economy given that we have already seen an immediate response in the form of a plunge in share prices on the local bourse?

A: Well those are immediate perceptions. Perceptions die away as you know.

I think this has no meaning.

What is required is that all Zimbabweans must embrace the fact that elections have winners and losers and when people win we must not seek to suffocate the economy because we may not have desired a particular result.

This is our country for all of us. It is important that we must give goodwill to our economy. Zanu PF is in office; they won an election.

The economy must respond to whatever policies they have, but if, of course, they have bad policies then there must be a response.

But you cannot simply say because Mugabe has won therefore the economy must go down. That is quite dangerous.

We cannot pin our economy on the identity of who takes power. We must pin our economy on the basis that we have a democracy that is working, we have an election and those who have won the election must govern.

We must give them the support that is required to be given to a government and give them the criticism that must be given to a government for the next five years.

That’s what should happen.

Q: Last time you hinted you would review the NCA role and possibly form a political party. Are you forming a party now that elections have been held and when?

A: I am not sure about the when but there is going to be a party that will be formed.

We are working on the mechanism of getting that party. We do not want this continuous wrangle between Zanu PF and the MDC.

This is a party that would be different from the MDC and different from Zanu PF. It is more like a third way.

We desperately need another party in this country. It will be definitely announced before the end of the year.

Our intention is to have the party fully-launched in December.

But currently we are working very hard on the ground to try and put in place the kind of framework that should unite the people.

The idea was mooted by the NCA membership but obviously to make it a party you need the support of other people.

So we have to link up with our ideology. But this will still be a social democratic party.

We want as party that is concerned mainly with fate of the poor people and the marginalised.

Q: Who is likely to be involved in the party?

A: It is currently the NCA leadership. We do not have people that are known but it will be a very big party.

Q: Are you likely to recruit from Zanu PF and the two MDC formations?

A: We do not know whether there are people from those parties that would want to join us.

What we know is that Robert Mugabe has a support base of currently 2,1 million, Tsvangirai has close to 1,2 million and according to the voters’ register, there are about 3 million Zimbabweans who are actually of voting age who appear on the voters’ roll who have not shown much interest.

Our focus will be on those people. We will be quite generous to allow those parties to maintain and retain their support base.

We are building a new base and ours is a bigger one. We expect to get the bulk of our support from new players.

We will parade our policies very clearly. We are not targeting members of Zanu PF or members of the MDC.

Q: Will you be vying for the Presidency?

A: If I am elected I will lead the party. Currently, I have the responsibility to co-ordinate its formation by virtue of being the leader of the NCA where the idea has come from.

But there will be an election at an inaugural congress in December when the party is being launched.

If I am elected I will happily accept the position but once that happens we will also see whether the party has any rules about the presidential candidate.

But our party will be participating in the 2018 elections; there is no doubt about that.

Comments (36)

Prof Madhuku am already a member of the third way. Bring it on.

archbald - 8 August 2013

some of the issues that madhuku raises sound genuine. zanu pf has "won" the election and they have to run the government on their own so that we do not have accusations and counter accusations on why something would have gone wrong. if they rigged the election, they cannot rig the economy. on the formation of another political party, i hope they are not doing it just because they did not get a chance to be part of MDC-T. if they forming it from a vengeful spirit then their are doomed.

Black Crow - 8 August 2013

Prof your party will die before even formed. Learning from history, professors have let us down and judging from your comments it's very clear that your intention is not to save the people but building your name

Tino Munjanga - 8 August 2013

Cde Madhuku! You clearly are part of a grand strategy that stole the people's voice. How much did you get, $2 million or was it less? Was it worth it?

CHIPIKIRI - 8 August 2013

Munhu waProffessor shuwa, NCA have got no following, what makes u think u will have a following on the political front

Dofo - 8 August 2013

Madhuku will be easy meat for Zanu pf,he is alleged to have impregnated his wive's sister i wonder how he will respond to these allegations/accusations come electioneering time?

gorekore - 8 August 2013

Lets be fair guys, do not just hurl insults without challenging the exact words you are against. point out where you think he is getting it wrong. the interview is there for everyone to read and react. dont use zanu jongwe tactics of just attacking

Black Crow - 8 August 2013

What is happening in the aftermath of the elections is exactly what ZANU-PF would want. Having so many cooks in the kitchen and splintering of bright minds to form the "next big party". We can not have the flavour of the year mentality in our opposition politics if there is any chance of winning. Notice that Madhuku, began by tearing the MDC-T before the elections and has continued after although in this Q & A he was somewhat toned down. Yes there is need for reflection, and for sure we need to organize ourselves. But doing so on the premise that by simply forming another party with new ideas isn't going to solve the problem. A serious flaw in Madhuku's analysis is the assumption that the elections were free of violence, coercion and threats of violence are equally if not more toxic to an electoral process. Besides, ZANU-PF is a machine that learns and perfects its acts with time. In 2018, they will be better prepared for more sophisticated rigging, in other words, by saying that he does not expect violence, Madhuku is falling into the same trap all have fallen, in... Defeating yourself before the party is formed, something the MDC had been very successful in avoiding in the past.

tino - 8 August 2013

Madhuku needs to quit whatever he is smoking. Who will fund this party of yours? As it stands right now Zanu have a 2/3 majority and will reverse the few modest reforms negotiated in the constitution to give their president even more powers. All the institutions of state will be even more zanufied than they currently are. The next 5yrs they will be tightening the screws even further destroying any hints of opposition to ensure that N.Korea will seem like paradise.

Jokes aside - 8 August 2013

Professor Madhuku is totally lost. No civilian party will ever defeat a ZanuPF military dictatorship. ZanuPF won the mock election because the ZanuPF military, police and militias coerced people BEFORE the mock election, simple as that. This has nothing to do with ZanuPF policies. How can Madhuku be a politician when he doesn't discern that civilian parties or party will never be able to unseat a ZanuPF military dictatorship? The MDCs were just wasting political space. They have been using the same strategy over and over again hoping for a different outcome. Changing faces will do nothing to unseat a ZanuPF military dictatorship. The MDCs should have informed Sadc, Mbeki, AU, UN, and EU way back after the violent mock election in 2008 that Zimbabwe was under the grip of a ZanuPF military dictatorship. but they chose to compete with a military dictatorship and lost dismally. You cannot fight an armoured military tank armed only with a pistol as what the MDCs have been trying to do for the last decade. Clearly Madhuku like most Zimbabweans do not understand what a military dictatorship is. The military and police can intimidate the populace with impunity - this is what they have done. You cannot blame election foreign observers because they don't fully understand the nuances of Zimbabwean politics. You can never have a free and fair election when vulnerable villagers are coerced to vote on the pain of a beating or death by the ZanuPF military, police and militias.

Chin - 8 August 2013

Madhuku , enda unovhiya mbudzi ! ! ! ! Go and slaughter a goat for us to eat at the padare (Political debate platform) because you are a useless partaker on this political debate platform. Go away ! ! ! What you do not know is that , this bad experience that has made the MDC-T to lose elections will make them wiser than ever before. The vote riggers have made MDC-T stronger and wiser than ever before because they have learnt a lesson from vote riggers. They will push on and on and on with Tsvanirayi at the helm and win one day , because "Sango rinopa waneta!!!" Which means, the forest will give you food only, at the last minute when you are really really exhausted from hunting and you are about to give up any hope of catching an animal to eat, then surprise surprise , you catch the animal at last, at that last minute that you were about to give up. Which means Tsvangirayi and his party must keep the fight going , through thick and thin , and one day they will win. The MDC -T have a hard road to travel and many rivers to cross, before they reach the place they are going to.

Small Face - 8 August 2013

Iwe madhuku. usatanga nekutipa ma subjective commends awakatipa zuro riya izvo iwe uri kuda hako koita party yako. In your last interview you you indicated that the elections were free and fair but today you say there was no fairness. I know you want to gain popularity by discrediting other parties but i think its too early to conflict what you said yesterday

gwejeregwede - 8 August 2013

Unfortunately Madhuku's ambitions of being a president, hence his suggestion of a 3 rd party is not a solution to the Zimbabwean crisis because, 1. The question that needs to be addressed in Zimbabwe is 'Genuine Participation Of The Majority' in chosing leaders. That being the case, a 3rd party will not bring this 'GPOM' and what Zimbabweans need today is to be given the power to select and fire leaders. The constituton is not a tool strong enough at the moment because we have seen how ZANU PF has manipulated it. Only when Zimbabweans are equiped with 'GPOM' as a tool to fight criminals in ZANU until they are gone, then revert back to the constitution as a tool that governs our land, can the majority of the people have a voice in Zimbabwe . Without 'GPOM', ZUNU PF will continue to rule because they use their effective tool, 'Total Exclusion Of The Majority In Politics' (TEOMP) through the use of force and voter manipulation. Now ZANU can only be stopped when their tool is neutralised by 'GPOM' The MDC has the best platform to launch 'GPOM' and Zimbabweans do not need a 3rd political party. After all we have so many political parties in Zimbabwe, however who seem to be hooked in getting into office and not to empower the masses to remove Mugabe and his criminals.

Ziziharinanyanga - 8 August 2013

Madhuku is suspicious!

Jingli - 8 August 2013

inonzi zanu pf...sinjonjo..tamba wakachenjera.!!!!!!

Zvobgo - 8 August 2013

Madhuku you have joined the band of clueless professors in our beloved nation. Very educated yet very poor in your analysis of Zimbabwean situation. Ours is more than a constitutional crisis and as such your cry for a 'perfect constitution' in the current environment is just a waste of time. There is no amount of madness that surpasses thinking that zanu will allow the amendment of the constitution to suit the will of the people and worse adhering to than constitution. zanu and its judiciary system can shift the goal posts whist paying the game and no one, including you, would stop them. This is not the time for you to form your political party as this would simply weakens the opposition. You really need to back to the drawing board and examine your idea again before you become an enemy of the people.

Tino Munjanga - 8 August 2013

Bring it on professor

zidzoro - 8 August 2013

Madhuku has lost any credibility that he ever had by at one time singing from the Zanu pf hym book just like his fellow professors- Jonathan, Auther to mention but a few. Noone will take him seriously from now on. Deep down in his heart he knows this election was stolen but he shies away from that- that's being a lier and we are watching that. Its better to say the truth and offer strategic alternatives- It seems he is now more comfortable with Zanu pf than with the Mdcs- wonder how much they gave him. Zanu pf knows the power of cash.

Collins Thole - 8 August 2013

NO ONE IN HIS RIGHT MIND SHOULD TAKE THIS EX-CONVICT SERIOUSLY. MADHUKU CANNOT BE TRUSTED WITH MONEY REGARDLESS OF AMONUT, LEAVE HIM WITH A PENNY YOU FIND IT GONE. HE DID IT AT CYF (UCCZ) YOUTH WING, TRUSTEE FUNDS AT A LAW FIRM, NCA... COMPELETE THE LIST

Watikiritai - 8 August 2013

Madhuku , BACK OFF AND YOUR NONSENSE ! ! ! WE DON'T WANT YOUR NONSENSICAL IDEAS .All you want is a publicity stunt, so go away and eat your mazhanje at home ! ! ! Kagotsi kanenge mutserendende we ma dzvinyu ! ! !

Mutengesi Sell out - 8 August 2013

Madhuku -to be honest with you I don't see you winning elections .Zanu pf unoiziva mushe here iwe let me warn you they have planted their agents around your group before you even form your party,by the time you form it you will discover that some of the guys who are in your group they are there to cause confusion.when election comes you will see the very guy you thot that is loyal wil start behaving weirdly or even resigning.wake up and smell the coffee.THe problem with this small parties they are power hungry instead of putting yo heads together and unseat ZANU pf.You should learn from the past election if all parties had put heads together,we were going to have a different story. Wake up Madhuku and learn from those mistakes .I can assure you if you form another party you are not going to win and ZANU pf will be in power again coz you are going to split votes.United we stand divided we fall.

Tindo - 8 August 2013

Madhuka you are full of confussion.Now you want to use the very constitution you were criticizing when others were busy to put it in place.The truth about you is that you are against change .You are comfortable as long as Zanu Pf is in power because there is a lot you are getting out of it.

chimwango - 8 August 2013

well articulated by an a potential zanoid next victim.Madhuku though a smart man will never climb that mountain,Zanu PF is big and a giant that will only be silenced by a split amongst itself after Mr,Mugabe is resigned.A split in Zanu PF will see people like Madhuku smilling if they start putting their machineryright now and build capacity in numbers or membership.Like he said a well defined policy and vision can attract any discerning electrorate ,people like me are open minded and will follow good national policies when anyone is prepared to bring a better change.MDC original had the chance but those splits they had was enough for my judgement that they will never take on zanu Madhuku has advantages though 1, he has a strategy 2, he is no tea boy ,he is smart 3,He good analytic skills and has law capacity 4, He has been to Zanu torture and has never set in the same table with zanoids 5,he is trasparent

mdala - 8 August 2013

Madhuku, is not a disinterested person, all along, he has wanted the rigged and stolen elections of 31st July 2013, won by Zanu PF. If the elections were won by some other Party, Madhuku would have condemned the outcome and not talked of forming a Third Party. Since he is not interested in a free and fair outcome of the elections, therefore, he is not interested in the expression of the electorate. Third Party plans based on the rigged win of Zanu PF, is cheering for the continued looting and use of Chiadzwa diamonds. Madhuku is a mercenary who does not care about the wishes of the electorate but would like to use its emotions against Zanu PF.

Tapera Yemurai Choto - 9 August 2013

Haaa musoro banga madhuku. Just look at how your coallegue who thought is more educated, clever and more appealing performed at the just ended election. You and Kisinoti are no different. You differ in 2 areas. 1 Kisinoti has a better head than yours 2. You are a clueless ZanuPF sympathiser professors and Kisinoti is non professor clueless Zanupf sympathiser. Go to hell and burn

MadhukuZanuPF - 9 August 2013

For people to waste time talking about madhuku`s madness will only take us no where.Madhuku must look for a company that will do a PANEL BEATING ye musoro wake usina shape uyo.churu chemajuru chirinani becoz chiri cone-shaped.what kind of madness can you expect from some body with a shapeless head like madhuku besides this one?mahure haawanikwe mumabhawa chete,even in politics.he is one of those political prostitutes.

gulaz - 9 August 2013

Madhuku a very STUPID, SILLY & CONFUSED OLDMAN, this is what you and the ZANU THUGS planned when you suddenly joined them to the SADC MAPUTO IN JUNE 2013. AND YOU WANT TO SPLIT MDC-TEAM VOTES. HOW MUCH WERE YOU GIVEN WHEN YOU WENT TO MAPUTO AND HOW MUCH WERE YOU PROMISED TO PARTICIPATE IN THE 2018 ELECTIONS. sO IT'S VERY CLEAR THESE ELECTIONS WERE STOLEN AND THERE WAS A PLAN AREADY TO MAKE SURE THE MDC-TEAM DOESN'T WIN THEM AT ALL COSTS. WE KNOW ALL YOUR TRICKS MADHUKU WE ARE ALL CLEVER EVEN BETTER THAT YOU. PROGRESSIVE FORCES OF ZIMBABWE SIYANAI NE THIS OTHER ZANU AGENT BY THE OF NAME OF MADHUKU

EARTHQUAKE31JULY - 9 August 2013

It is unfortunate that the majority of MDC T supporters are still in denial mode. Madhuku, like everyone else, should be allowed a chance to exercise his democratic right to participate in Zimbabwe politics. Kumutuka kana kumushora kuno ratidza kushomeka kwebrain. Kusafarira munhu is not a right to insult munhu. Kana tichinyora ma e-mails edu ndaarambe akatarisana ne mafacts and not fictions or insults. one can always agree to disagree without insulting one another. Ngatinyorei responsibly tisingatukane. thank you

honest - 9 August 2013

Madhuku a very STUPID, SILLY & CONFUSED OLDMAN, this is what you and the ZANU THUGS planned when you suddenly joined them to the SADC MAPUTO IN JUNE 2013. AND YOU WANT TO SPLIT MDC-TEAM VOTES. HOW MUCH WERE YOU GIVEN WHEN YOU WENT TO MAPUTO AND HOW MUCH WERE YOU PROMISED TO PARTICIPATE IN THE 2018 ELECTIONS. sO IT'S VERY CLEAR THESE ELECTIONS WERE STOLEN AND THERE WAS A PLAN AREADY TO MAKE SURE THE MDC-TEAM DOESN'T WIN THEM AT ALL COSTS. WE KNOW ALL YOUR TRICKS MADHUKU WE ARE ALL CLEVER EVEN BETTER THAT YOU. PROGRESSIVE FORCES OF ZIMBABWE SIYANAI NE THIS OTHER ZANU AGENT BY THE OF NAME OF MADHUKU

EARTHQUAKE31JULY - 9 August 2013

Hatisi kumutuka as such but zvinorwadza kuti munhu watai funga kuti is a progressive force is now dining with the oppressers. so we are just telling him what we think about him and what we know about him as well so that he must not take us for granted pretending to be a 3 RD FORCE yet is the same as 1 ST FORCE. CHIMU TSANANGURIRA ZVATIRIKUREVA NEZVAKE IT APPEARS NDIWE SPOKESMEN WAKE .

EARTHQUAKE31JULY - 9 August 2013

There is absolutely no need for 'a third way'. The only thing that should happen is for Tsvangirai to step down and allow the MDC to be more democratic and less Zanu -like. In that way the Madhukus, Gwisais, Sikhalas, Ncubes and other progressive democratic forces will come back to the MDC. Tsvangirai's persona is what is what has destroyed the party and he needs to ship out sooner rather than later. His time is up.

pretty - 9 August 2013

This man said it during the time we were figthing to have a home grown constitution, that he will never have a desire to be president of Zimbabwe unless a new constitution was put in place.The constitution that he mobilised against is now a reality.He is now thinking of Presidency,and like all the other professors he is not happy with Tsvangirai.Had it not been that we had people like him we could have had our own constitution way back.We eagerly await the new party as he has promised.We will definitely show him how we feel about technocrats of his level of education when they are in politics.Chakatanga ndichochakachenjedza.Openly he declaired that he was not going to support the MDCs because they blocked his bid to write the constitution.Battle lines are already drawn VaMaduku.

nathaniel - 9 August 2013

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lb - 9 August 2013

Madhuku you are crazy coz all of a sudden ZANU (PF) is a democratic party. You are a maggot coz all you want is to derail the peoples' cause by forming the so called third party. Tsvangirai is the peoples' choice whether you like it or not. You are a tinpot dictator just like your ZANU (PF) friends. History will judge you harshly.

Chief Philip Charumbira - 9 August 2013

All you people are blinkered. Whether its Madhuku or its someone else, both Zanu or MDC are not winning in 2018. Nomatter how Zanu rig and employ baba jukwa for his propaganda reasons , this time it will not work. You need people who can strategise to unsit Zanu. Not people whorely on the west for strategic thinking. Do you think the west can fathom carrying people to polling stations. Do you think the west can advise you to intimidate people. The only intimidation from the west is water boarding. They ar too civilised to advise African parties. You need zimbabweans to be clever to come up with silly rigging methods that aloofs the whole world. Therefore a third way is required to be led by someone. This person has chances of winning becoz then Zanu will have lost credibility. In 2015 Zanu will undergo a major intenal conflict that will split it. That split will cause the third way to be successful. Tsvangirai is no longer relevant. Someone appealing to the youth, middle class and marginalised. Somone for the grassroots will be successful in th thrid way. Don't listen to baba jukwa who is destroying MDC. Leading them astray in evidence.

BGFF - 10 August 2013

Mamuona Madhuku uya manje,wakutsvaka mari nedemo,shame.NCA has no following at all,and you think you can outdo MDC T,shame.Unoda kurohwa manje,wafarisa ikozvino.Futi you were part of the zanu pf rigging machine and you are pretending to sympathise with the people,rombe remunhu.

josefa chinotimba - 11 August 2013

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