Mavambo Party Takes Control Of University of Zimbabwe Students' Body

The new leadership of the University of Zimbabwe Student Representative Assembly pose for a group photo today at the University. They are from left to right as you are looking at the picture: Tafadzwa Mazonde (Committee Member), Stephen Zvinavakobvu (Head of Disciplinary Committee), Stuart Mwale (Secretary-General), Misheck Mugabe (Vice-Chairperson), Samuel Matikiti (Chairperson), Emmanuel Muzanenhamo (Committee Member). They are also the leaders of the Mavambo-aligned Amalgamated Students Union of Zimbabwe (ASUZ) and are active members of the Mavambo.Kusile.Dawn youth structures.

Harare, Zimbabwe, 27 October 2009

Mavambo.Kusile.Dawn, the party led by Dr Simba Makoni, has taken control of the University of Zimbabwe Students Assembly.

The SRA is now controlled by the Mavambo-aligned Amalgamated Students Union of Zimbabwe, whose leadership is also active in the Youth leadership of the Mavambo.Kusile.Dawn party.

Out of the 22 positions in the Council (which popularly elected by the students at the UZ), Mavambo and ASUZ secured 13 positions, including he key positions of Chairperson, Vice-Chair and Secretary General. The SRA acts as the parliament of the Students' Union.

MDC-Tsvangirai-aligned students secured 3 of the 22 available seats, ZANU PF took control of one, ZAPU (Dabengwa) took one and the rest are Independents.

I understand the University authorities are reluctant to let the Students Administration move with speed to now constitute the Student Executive Council, which together with the SRA, will then inform the final Students Representative Council (SRC).

It is expected that when this process is allowed to proceed, the Mavambo/ASUZ group will naturally assume its position as the dominant party in student politics not only at the UZ but also at other tertiary institutions.

The "seizure of power" by the Mavambo group at the UZ is an indication of just how well Makoni's party is doing generally amongst the people of Zimbabwe. Their approach has been to work the grassroots directly all over country.

The impression that the party has gone quiet is, hence, proved to be wrong. It's like the proverbial duck - appearing all calm on the surface while paddling like crazy below the waterline.

ASUZ was started by students who were unhappy with the way Student politics had been hijacked by such parties as the MDC-T who insisted on being supported without offering a programme either for the country or for students themselves.

It appears their position is resonating with students in general and they expect that they will also control other student bodies when they are constituted at Bindura State University, Chinhoyi, NUST and other Universities in the country.

Personally I congratulate the new group, who appear raring to go. I met some of them today and they are a passionate and very informed bunch. They know the potential of Zimbabwe and can see clearly what future this country can have with the right of leadership!


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