Nelson Chamisa was today appointed substantive leader of the Movement for Democratic Change-Tsvangirai and will be its presidential candidate in the coming elections.
The decision was reached after a six-hour meeting of the party’s national executive and national council which also gave the party seven days to engage vice-president Thokozani Khupe, national chairman Lovemore Moyo and organising secretary Abednigo Bhebhe.
Khupe has been arguing that she is the rightful heir to Tsvangirai while Moyo has indicated that he is quitting politics.
Bhebhe recently said the way the party was breaching its own constitution was the way it will govern.
“One thing that brings us together as members from different backgrounds is the constitution. When we disobey the constitution, it is not only a recipe for disaster, but it’s a reflection of how we are going to handle matters when we get into government,” he said.
“The path you walk to power will reflect how you will behave when you are in power and such kind of behaviour breeds danger to democracy.”
The party also suspended national spokesman Obert Gutu and said his deputy Thabitha Khumalo will be acting spokesperson.
It gave structures the mandate to select candidates for the coming elections and set 15 April as the deadline.
President Emmerson Mnangagwa has not set the date for elections yet but the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission said they should be held between 21 July and 21 August.
According to Veritas Zimbabwe, the earliest Mnangagwa can proclaim the elections, if he abides by the constitution, is 30 April.
Mnangagwa is trying to ensure he holds free, fair and credible elections to win international recognition.
Chamisa’s supporters are already seeing Mnangagwa as an easy walk over.-iNSIDER
By Jeffrey Muvundusi
Outspoken MDC legislator Eddie Cross has warned that the party’s vice president Thokozani Khupe is likely to face disciplinary action if she continues to oppose Nelson Chamisa, who was recently endorsed as the party’s acting president.
Khupe is at loggerheads with pro-Chamisa officials in the MDC over the opposition party’s leadership, and has since declared that she will not recognise his ascendency to power, declaring herself the acting president by virtue of being the only elected vice president unlike Chamisa and his counterpart Elias Mudzuri, who were both appointed by the late Morgan Tsvangirai.
Cross — also MDC policy coordinator general — told Southern News that it was clear Khupe was fighting a losing battle, hence she needed to reform for the purposes of unity in the party.
“The support for Chamisa is overwhelming,” he said.
“That is over. If Khupe persists she may be disciplined or lose her membership. All other leaders have accepted the inevitable,” Cross said.
The Bulawayo South MP dismissed the notion that the current leadership squabbles in the party will have an effect on the electorate come election time.
“It only affects the standing committee, at the grass roots there is almost complete support,” he said.
Cross also dismissed another widely held belief that Khupe was influential in the Matabeleland region, hence there was need to treat her issue with care.
“That is nonsense — she (Khupe) is delusional,” Cross curtly said.
Turning to the forthcoming election, Cross said President Emmerson Mnangagwa will face a tough election opponent in the name of Chamisa.
He said Mnangagwa has to fulfil his promises he made to the people upon his inauguration or risk facing a humiliating defeat.
“I think ED (Mnangagwa) has a real battle on his hands and will struggle against Chamisa. An upset is very possible especially if ED is unable to deliver.”
Cross has a reputation of being open-minded and forthright, which has earned him friends and foes alike.
Last year, he escaped disciplinary action by a whisker after he openly spoke about Tsvangirai’s health, which conservative members of the MDC felt was too intrusive.
Efforts to get Khupe’s comment were unsuccessful as her personal assistant, Witness Dube, did not respond to messages. DailyNews
MDC-T acting president Nelson Chamisa has dismissed allegations that he is a military project who was planted in the MDC-T. The claims were made by former president Robert Mugabe’s nephew Patrick Zhuwao who claimed that Chamisa was working for President Emmerson Mnangagwa. Zhuwao alleged that Chamisa was elevated to the MDC-T vice presidency at the behest of Zanu-PF political commissar Lieutenant-General (retired) Engelbert Rugeje. Zhuwao had claimed
… the presence of Nelson Chamisa at the visit by Chiwenga and Mnangagwa raises the question of whether Chamisa has already been compromised by the coup conspirators and military junta….The question of whether Chamisa is a Lacoste plant and mole in the MDC-T has consistently been gaining traction since the meeting between Tsvangirai, Komichi and Major General Rugeje where he pushed for the appointment of Chamisa as a Vice President in MDC-T. Is it true that when Tsvangirai dilly-dallied about appointing Chamisa as a VP, he was put under immense pressure by Elizabeth? Could such a view of Chamisa as an undercover agent have been made worse by Elizabeth’s closeness to both Chamisa and Marry Chiwenga?
In an interview, with the daily publication the Daly News, dismissed the reports saying:
In my whole life and before God, I have not met ED outside parliament or outside cabinet. Further, I have never had a discussion or dialogue with him on issues political or personal outside Parliament. People mistake my patriotism and love for the country for being an extension of comrades across the river. I am a believer in new politics, fresh politics, politics of respecting and honouring our collective diversity without losing our individual identities.
ED is Zanu-PF, I am MDC, but we are both Zimbabweans …They celebrate what we abhor and abhor what we celebrate. They celebrate corruption, we abhor it. They celebrate entitlement, we abhor it; they celebrate division, revenge and vindictiveness, we abhor it… they celebrate state-party conflation, we abhor it.
More: Daily News
It is claimed the former president ordered the deaths of people he believed were trying to depose him.
But many feel the National Peace and Reconciliation Commission (NPRC) hearings, set up by Zimbabwe’s government, are a waste of time.
Al Jazeera reports from the town of Lupane, Zimbabwe.
Click and watch the report here.