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Nelson Chamisa (born 2 February 1978[1]) is a Zimbabwean politician[2] current[3] MDC President and former member of the House of Assembly of Zimbabwe for Kuwadzana, Harare. He became the Secretary for Information and Publicity for the opposition party Movement for Democratic Change (MDC),[4] and former national youth chairperson for that party.[3] Chamisa was the MDC Alliance's candidate for president in the 2018 general election.[5] Today, he is the fastest rising and most popular politician in Zimbabwe.[citation needed] Many African dictators[who?] see him as a threat to the old order of big men and repression, for this reason SADC and the AU are skeptical about the changes he is inspiring across the continent.[citation needed]

Nelson Chamisa
President of the Movement for Democratic Change – Tsvangirai
Assumed office
15 February 2018
Preceded byMorgan Tsvangirai
PresidentEmmerson Mnangagwa
Minister of Information Communication Technology of Zimbabwe
In office
13 February 2009 – 31 July 2013
Prime MinisterMorgan Tsvangirai
Preceded byPosition established
Succeeded bySupa Mandiwanzira
Personal details
Born (1978-02-02) 2 February 1978 (age 41)
Fort Victoria, Rhodesia
(now Masvingo, Zimbabwe)
Political partyMovement for Democratic Change – Tsvangirai
ResidenceHarare, Zimbabwe
Alma materHarare Polytechnic
University of Zimbabwe



Chamisa is a former chairperson of the MDC Youth Assembly. He was elected MDC spokesman at the party Congress in June 2006. In April 2011 at the Party's congress in Bulawayo, he was elected as the Party's Organising secretary, a post that previously belonged to Elias Mudzuri. In Parliament, he was chair of the portfolio committees of Defence and Home Affairs, Public Accounts, Gender and Youth and Transport and Communications. Chamisa is also a member of the Local Government, Public Works & Urban Development and the African Caribbean and Pacific Parliament. He is a former secretary-general of the Zimbabwe National Students Union.

In March 2007 he was attacked at Harare International Airport as he attempted to leave the country for Belgium; he was admitted to a hospital with a broken skull. On the current situation in Zimbabwe, he said, "There is no security. There is no protection. All of us are at risk."[4]

On 10 February 2009, Morgan Tsvangirai designated Chamisa for the position of Minister of Information, Communication, and Technology as part of the national unity government.[6] After taking office, he fell into a dispute with Webster Shamu, the Minister of Information and Publicity, regarding which ministry should deal with telecommunications. The Herald reported on 10 April 2009, that President Robert Mugabe had assigned responsibility for telecommunications to the Ministry of Transport, headed by Nicholas Goche.[7] Chamisa and Tsvangirai objected to this decision, saying that Mugabe had no power to unilaterally assign telecommunications to another ministry under the terms of the power-sharing agreement.

Chamisa served as a cabinet minister from February 2009 to July 2013, until the end of the Government of national Unity. He also served as the Movement for Democratic Change's (MDC-T) organising secretary. He lost the position of party Secretary-General in the party's 2014 Congress to Douglas Mwonzora. Chamisa has been accused of barring other youth and student leaders from having closer access to party president Tsvangirai, a move allegedly meant to protect his position. After the expulsion of Tendai Biti and Elton Mangoma, Chamisa's relationship with Morgan Tsvangirai deteriorated; he was apparently not well liked by Tsvangirai's loyalists. On 16 July 2016 Chamisa was appointed as co-Vice President of the MDC by Tsvangirai to serve alongside Mudzuri and Khupe.

When party leader Morgan Tsvangirai began battling colon cancer, power struggles began to ensue in the party, mainly between the three Vice Presidents Chamisa, Elias Mudzuri and Thokozani Khupe. On 14 February 2018, it was announced that Tsvangirai had succumbed to colon cancer in the hospital and the next day, the Party's national council appointed Chamisa acting President for a period of 12 months effectively elbowing Mudzuri and Khupe out. As the new President of the MDC he also took over the role of Leader of the MDC Alliance. There were rumors that Chamisa had an affair with Morgan's wife and that she helped him take the post of party President.

30 July 2018 Chamisa lost a disputed election to ZANU PF's Mnangagwa. The election has been widely criticized for lacking credibility and being unfair. Chamisa challenged the election results in Zimbabwe's constitutional court but his challenge was dismissed with cost. After the failure to convince the Constitutional Court, Chamisa questioned the independence of the judiciary and has since promised his supporters a strategy to regain stolen electoral victory.[8]

Chamisa claims ZANU-PF lost elections. His claims are backed up by the EU observers and several other observer bodies that reported the elections were not free and fair.[citation needed]


Chamisa holds a bachelor's degree in political science and public administration, and an LLB (Honours) from the University of Zimbabwe. He is a qualified lawyer and has worked for Harare law firm Atherstone and Cook since November 2014. In 2016, he obtained a degree in Pentecostal Theology from Living Waters Theological Seminary of Harare, a seminary affiliated with the Apostolic Faith Mission in Zimbabwe.[9]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Nelson Chamisa". Movement for Democratic Change Online. Movement for Democratic Change. Retrieved 1 April 2007.
  2. ^ "PROFILE: Nelson Chamisa, the young rival seeking Zimbabwe poll upset".
  3. ^ a b "Nelson Chamisa". Chamisa declared illegitimate president. My Zimbabwe News. Retrieved 18 April 2019.
  4. ^ a b "Zimbabwe stops activists leaving". BBC Online. 18 March 2007. Retrieved 1 April 2007.
  5. ^ The Harare Times (30 November 2018). "What next for Nelson Chamisa?". The Harare Times.
  6. ^ "Zimbabwe: Full Tsvangirai MDC Cabinet List", SW Radio Africa (, 10 February 2009.
  7. ^ "Mugabe gives ally control of telecoms", Sapa-AFP (IOL), 10 April 2009.
  8. ^ [1]
  9. ^ Herald, Chamisa now a pastor,, USA, 28 November 2016

External linksEdit