HARARE – Joice Mujuru’s National People’s Party (NPP) has hit the campaign trail, fronting the People’s Rainbow Coalition (PRC) ahead of this year’s key general election.
Mujuru’s spokesperson and NPP’s secretary-general Gift Nyandoro told the Daily News that so far, the party has held mobilisation meetings in Mt Darwin, Mashonaland West and Masvingo, campaigning for an alliance of opposition parties under the PRC banner, in which Mujuru is the flag bearer and presidential candidate.
The 62-year-old Mujuru was former president Robert Mugabe’s deputy for a decade and seen as the veteran president’s likely successor until he fired her in 2014, accusing her of leading a plot to oust him.
She then launched a new party NPP in March 2016 to challenge her ally-turned-adversary.
PRC, a combination of four small opposition political parties, is set to battle it out with the ruling Zanu PF party in the forthcoming elections.
The other parties in the grouping are the People’s Democratic Party splinter group led by Lucia Matibenga, Zimbabweans United for Democracy Party led by Farai Mbira and the Democratic Assembly for Restoration and Empowerment led by Gilbert Dzikiti.
Mujuru has now started to prepare a campaign that will see her stand as a presidential candidate in the election under the PRC banner, promising to revive the economy and repair strained relations with the West.
“This is the time for the campaign process but this is being done as part of the broader projection of the PRC project,” Nyandoro said.
“Predominantly, this is a process that is being spearheaded by the NPP to conscientise people on the existence of PRC. We want people to know that we are now part of the PRC. Everything that we are doing now is being done under the PRC.”
Mujuru and her partners have flatly refused to be part of the MDC Alliance, which is considered to be the bigger opposition alliance — with seven opposition parties — citing various anomalies, chief among them, the name of the coalition.
NPP has demanded a coalition that has an all-inclusive name, logo, symbol and slogan which is neutral and not derived from one or some of the coalescing parties.
This is despite the general agreement that the parties must work together if they are to entertain any chances of winning against Zanu PF, which has been in power since 1980.