Barbara Nyagomo: The Making of a Female President in Zimbabwe
Zimbabweans will be electing a new president in less than one and half years and the 95 years old President Robert Mugabe may likely re-contest. Some allies of the ailing president told SECURITY MONITOR Managing Editor Wale Abideen in an online chat that Mugabe prefers to die in power. If this is true of the African longest serving president, Barbara Nyagomo whose many describes as the face of modern democracy in Zimbabwe may be having tough battle racing against the sitting president with enormous power and financial muscle at his disposal.
Barbra Nyagomo, the 47 years old presidential candidate of Progressive Democrats of Zimbabwe (PDZ) will be aged 49 by 2018 when Zimbabwe will be heading to poll. Young, youthful, vibrant and beautiful, Nyagomo is a UK based entrepreneur, nurse, and activist. Nyagomo’s PDZ is the only opposition party that has been contesting bi-elections against ZANU-PF in recent years. As orator and passionate lovers of people’s welfares, Nyagomo is very active on social media and has trained many women in skill acquisition such as soap and candle making. It remains to be seen if Zimbabwe is ready for a female president but undoubtedly the energetic woman has what many Zimbabweans refers to as leader of the masses to work for her . This is evident in her track record. Some political figures in Zimbabwe told SECURITY MONITOR that Nyagomo has a better chance than other contenders
Aside Nyagomo, Morgan Tsvangirai of the MDC is also on the race, the 64 Years old politician is believed to have a whittle down followers in Zimbabwe. Indeed,Tsvangirai is a charismatic speaker, visionary and the first person to challenge the ZANU-PF government.
If he is not capable of contesting for any reason, the young and popular Neslon Chamisa(37 years) would just be just as capable. Chamisa, due to his age, will not meet the 40 years criteria to contest as President in 2018. The MDC-T will therefore need to look hard for a candidate in such an eventuality.
Some other new comers may be joining the presidential race. Even though, information about them is scanty the likes of Pastor Evan Mawarire of the popular His Generation Church – 38 years old
The fearless Pastor Evan Mawarire, many believe that like the biblical Moses has been sent by God to deliver Zimbabweans from bondage. Pastor Evan will not meet the 40 years criteria to contest as President in 2018 but will certainly be a force to reckon with in the future.
Also in the race is Dr. Shingi Munyeza, the 52 years old pastor of Faith Ministries. Munyeza is a respected entrepreneur, senior Pastor and experienced business leader, Dr. Munyeza has impacted the lives of many young Zimbabweans just like Barbara Nyagomo.
Nathan Banana of the Freedom Justice Coalition of Zimbabwe (FJCZ) is a 49 years old UK based son of the first President of Zimbabwe, the late Canaan Banana. He has the advantage of his father’s history of persecution under the current government on his side. After my interview with him in June 2016
Promise Mkwananzi aged 31 is a foot political soldier, and former president of ZINASU but will need to mature with age and learn to pick his battles. He will not meet the 40 years criteria to contest as President in2018.
The ZANU-PF Candidates
The candidates in this class may not win a free and fair election in Zimbabwe. Although they have their own new political parties, most of them will go back to ZANU-PF if they are given
the opportunity to do so. They are deeply mistrustex by the common Zimbabwean.
1.Vice President – Emmerson Munanganwa (ZANU-PF) – 70 years
2.Joice Mujuru (ZANU People First) – 61 years
3.Simba Makoni (Mavambo) – 66 years
4.Acie Lumumba (VIVA – Zimbabwe) – 30 Years
5.Mutumwa Mawere – ANC South Africa – 56 years
6.Dumiso Dabengwa – ZAPU – 76 years
However, of all the contenders, Barbara Nyagomo and Morgan Tsvangarai is the most favored. If the age of the latter is at his disadvantage, Zinmbabwe may be second to Liberia in time of crowing a female president after all, what a man does a woman can do better.