Know your candidate: Christopher Ndiweni

In our Know Your candidate series, we sit down with Christopher Ndiweni, a former Zimbabwe People’s Revolutionary Army (ZPRA) member and aspiring councillor for the Citizens Coalition for Change in Victoria Falls.

Below are the excerpts of that interview:

Please briefly tell us about yourself, your political background and what you stand for?

My name is Christopher Ndiweni. I am a former freedom fighter from (ZPRA) and I was a member of the National Peoples Party (NPP) party in the 2018 elections.

I stand for fairness in the distribution of resources for all citizens throughout the country, the removal of government policies that seek to divide the country on tribal lines and those that undermine certain groups and regions of the country.

What motivated you to join the Citizens Convergence for Change (CCC) led by Nelson Chamisa?

It is my hope that the CCC, unlike other political formations before, has realised the dangers of divisive politics and will be able and they will promote inclusiveness.

What made you want to contest in the upcoming by-elections.  

I will be running for office to ensure that service delivery happens in my ward fairly without prejudice.

 What are some of the issues that are on your priority list if you win the elections?

The priority list that I have or what I can say from what I have noticed is that there are some people that are into politics not knowing why they are into politics. For instance, there are people that are into politics for employment and people that are into politics for money but as for myself, I am into politics for the love of people. I will be like a conveyor belt, conveying some people’s grievances to the head of the local authority, that is the Victoria Falls City, up to the ministry of local government.

What are the challenges that aspiring candidates like you are facing on the campaign trail?

The challenge that I am facing as an aspiring candidate is that I am not allowed to campaign freely like what ZANU PF does. I have my own strategies of campaigning but I can’t put them into practice because if I do that I will get arrested.

CCC has been given little room to manoeuvre in the political arena by both the ruling Zanu PF party and State security agencies. How do you intend to reach out to potential voters in such an environment?

As a CCC member, I have been given very little room to manoeuvre, but as a ZIPRA freedom fighter, I will definitely make sure I get to the residents and convey my message about what CCC is all about. 

The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission is currently embarking on a voter registration blitz ahead of the 2023 elections. What are you doing as a politician to ensure that your supporters register to vote?

I am trying by all means to encourage those that are not registered to vote to register, especially the youths. For those that are having difficulties getting some national identity cards, I will try to assist them to get some birth certificates so that they can get some. I also conscientize them about the importance of voting.

There are reports that there is widespread apathy when it comes to voter registration. What do you think are the reasons for that?

Yes, it’s true that there’s widespread voter apathy because people see no value in voting even if you win an election ZANU PF does not want to move out of power. It rigs.

What will you do differently as a politician if you are given an opportunity to lead in the forthcoming elections?

What I will do differently as a politician is to make sure that I advocate to see the minister of Local Government, not politicising issues.

Please feel free to add on issues that you feel are important to your campaign and your community.

I am a freedom fighter so I expect to see a rainbow city that will see all stakeholders involved in decision making.

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