Nelson Chamisa’s HardTalk interview: My verdict by Dr Brighton Chireka
I was told that Zimbabwe is full of educated people and as a Zimbabwean I have been supporting that statement but I am starting to have a lot of doubts. The debate on this HardTalk is full of hearsay yet we have the video to watch and have informed discussions.
I have seen lots of comments about Chamisa’s HardTalk interview and sadly most of the people commenting seem to have not even bothered to watch the interview. Some join the criticisms just because a certain person has said so. Anyway we are a democratic country that allows us to say our views so I will carry out my own analysis.
HardTalk is hard talk for a reason. The interviewer is there to grill and trick you so you come out bruised. In view of the nature of the interview, did Chamisa come out bruised or not ?
Let us analyse it .This an analysis from a doctor.
I have watched Chamisa at rallies and had him address us in a room so my analysis of his demeanour At HardTalk is in comparison with that. He was calm and composed. Was not emotional and did not react angrily even when his ideas where being said to be NONSENSE. This word was used several times and we all know that in Zimbabwe people can fight just because you have called someone’s idea nonsense. Personally I had to get used to some of my patients calling some of my medical suggestions as nonsense.
Chamisa was said to be overzealous but his answer was credible to me. In Shona we say “ Kufa kwemujoni kamba haivharwe” ( We do not close the police station just because one officer has died). We are in an election year so there is no time to waste. Chamisa was asked on violence and his answer was good and he went on to tell us that police was involved and the police’s lack of investigation, when they did escort the victims.
He was then grilled on Mugabe and his answer resonated well with me in that we do not believe in dragging Mugabe before the courts. In as much as he may have messed up we must not forget that Mugabe played an important role in our liberation struggle. He is in the past so there is no need to look too much into the past.
On Gukurahundi, he spoke about forgiveness , compensation and reconciliation which I totally agree with . We need to make sure that the victims of Gukurahundi have a closure to this tragedy once and for all. On cash crisis he was told that his promise of sorting out the crisis within 12 days is nonsense and his answer was that during the GNU they sorted the cash problem within 4 days. This to me was a STAR answer which resonated well with me.
Vision to follow Morocco and Ethiopia
Bullet trains – Here we have a problem of a British interviewer who does not speak Shona and does not understand our figurative speech . Chamisa made it clear that his vision is to follow what Morocco and Ethiopia have done. We all know how we used to read about how poor Ethiopia was so if they have fast trains then it gives us much hope that we can do it.
The question on Chinese investments was well answered. He made it clear that all deals regardless of nationality will be audited to make sure that they are benefiting the country. Chinese investment is welcomed in Zimbabwe so Chinese have nothing to fear as long as their deals are genuine.
Chamisa’s ideas were challenged as fantasy but he stood his ground by talking about his role as a minister in the GNU.
Now coming to the Donald Trump issue . Yes we have a video clip circulating in which Chamisa is saying that he met “Trump”. We all know that in Shona “ukasangana nemakurukota amambo watosangana naMambo. Here we have a British interviewer who only knows what was interpreted to him as the meaning of that statement.
Chamisa went on to clarify that he met the Trump administration and also that he agrees with the Trump administration position of not supporting political parties but governments and their citizens.
Some are just basing their conclusions on that doctored video clip without watching the whole interview. Watch the whole interview and then join in the discussions.
I remember getting angry when Chamisa went to America and the outcome appeared as if their trip was to call for the continuation of sanctions. I am with him now when he said sanctions should not continue and there are not good. I am surprised by the silence by those of us who were critical of Chamisa after the USA trip. We should be embracing his stance on sanctions now.
So did Chamisa got bruised by this interview? We have had Mai Mujuru, Chinamasa, the late Morgan Tsvangirai and many others on HardTalk and we know what happened.
It is my personal conclusion that Chamisa did fairly well in the interview but yes there is room for improvement and age is on his side.
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