By Nkosana Dlamini
A group of US-based Nelson Chamisa sympathisers concerned by the opposition leader’s Monday attack by hordes of Zanu PF supporters in Masvingo, have launched a GoFundMe initiative to acquire an armoured car that would allow the popular MDC Alliance frontman to perform his 2023 presidential campaign safely.
A T. Basvi, who is leading the newly launched “Safety for Nelson Chamisa Initiative” based in the USA, says they have launched the “initiative to raise funds for the purchase of an armour-plated vehicle as well as security apparel for his safety and security.”
Basvi says the initiative was “apolitical”.
Reads the appeal, “My name is T. Basvi and I am a member of the Safety for Nelson Chamisa Initiative, an initiative based in the USA. representing a like initiative in Zimbabwe.
“Nelson Chamisa is a Zimbabwean Pastor, politician and President of the Movement for Democratic Change – Alliance. Nelson Chamisa was MDC Alliance’s candidate in the 2018 presidential election, an election he is widely believed to have won.
“Nelson Chamisa has received repeated and merciless attacks by from ruling party, aided by the government security sector. As recent as the 11th of October 2021, his motor vehicle convoy was ambushed and attacked by a marauding group of the ruling party’s youths, an attack which left his vehicles damaged and many of his aides seriously injured and hospitalized.
“We foresee a likelihood of increased attacks on him in the run up to the coming 2023 elections
“As concerned global citizens, we have come up with this initiative to raise funds for the purchase of an amour plated vehicle as well as security apparel for his safety and security.”
It was not clear if the MDC Alliance leadership has endorsed the initiative.
One Juma Ulete said he was seeking US$50 from 2 400 diasporans to shore up the opposition leader’s security as the 2023 campaign season hots up.
Ulete, a member of the initiative, said, “I am looking for 2400 diasporans to pay USD $50 each to buy an armoured vehicle 4 @nelsonchamisa fo 2023 elections. An audit firm can handle contributions and also account at the end of the process. Lets stop looters and debauchery gangsters! #citizensconvegenceforchange #NHM.”
I am looking for 2400 diasporans to pay USD $50 each to buy an armoured vehicle 4 @nelsonchamisa fo 2023 elections. An audit firm can handle contributions and also account at the end of the process. Lets stop looters and debauchery gangsters! #citizensconvegenceforchange #NHM pic.twitter.com/DX6Cpatf7g
— Juma Ulete (@julete01) October 12, 2021
However, if acquired, the vehicle may likely suffer the same fate seen of late founding MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai whose bulletproof BMW X5 was seized during his 2008 Presidential run-off campaign and is still deteriorating under a burning sun at Lupane police station in Matabeleland North.
When they impounded the car, police claimed the vehicle was not properly imported into the country.
The car was a gift to Tsvangirai by a South African friend Adrian Espag after reports of an assassination plot against the much-loved opposition leader who had just dealt an embarrassing defeat to then incumbent Robert Mugabe in an inconclusive first round of a 2008 presidential election.