from NDABENI MLOTSHWA in Bulawayo
BULAWAYO, (CAJ News) – ZIMBABWE’S main opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) is headed for yet another split after an intense power wrangle weeks after the death of founding president, Morgan Tsvangirai.
Self-imposed youthful leader Nelson Chamisa (aged 40) and expelled deputy president Thokozani Khupe (54) are fighting over control of the party.
Khupe, expelled alongside her sympathisers last Friday, argues she is the rightful leader having been elected as Tsvangirayi’s deputy at congress.
The former Deputy Prime Minister has been sacked together with party’s national organising secretary, Abednico Bhebhe, and spokesperson, Obert Gutu, for refusing to endorse Chamisa.
Lovemore Moyo, party chairman resigned in protest.
This week, Khupe and other expelled officials argued their faction were the rightful owners of party name and insisted they would campaign and run parallel MDC structures ahead of polls later this year.
Witness Dube, Khupe’s spokesperson, said they had since written to the national speaker of parliament, Jacob Mudenda, to be recognised as the rightful MDC.
They are seeking government funding under the Political Parties Finances Act.
“We expect to be allocated what is due to us under the Act. We expect that the government will do better by not discriminating against the MDC-T led by acting president Khupe,” Dube said.
Morgen Komichi, acting party chairman, siding with Chamisa, said Khupe and his sympathizers would be replaced.
“Our constitution has got a clause in which the president has the prerogative or the powers to appoint a member of the standing committee.
This is the same clause that was used by Tsvangirai to appoint Chamisa and (Elias) Mudzuri as two extra vice-presidents of the party,” Komichi said.
Formed in 1999, MDC split in 2005 after a deadlock over the participation in senatorial elections.
The current upheavals are seen as weakening the party against a revived ZANU-PF under President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
– CAJ News