MDC leader, Welshman Ncube has warned opposition parties against pressing the self-destruct button by throwing unnecessary conditions around the issue of a proposed coalition ahead of general elections next year.
Source: ‘Be careful what you wish for’, Ncube warns Tsvangirai – NewsDay Zimbabwe February 4, 2017
BY SILAS NKALA
The warning comes following pronouncements by MDC-T vice-president, Thokozani Khupe declaring that the country’s biggest opposition party, by parliamentary representation, does not need partners particularly in the Matabeleland region.
But MDC spokesperson Kurauone Chihwayi said the 2008 elections “taught” opposition parties not to be reckless lest they “snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.”
“Those responsible for prevailing on others to walk away from the 2008 coalition agreement need be careful that they are not seen today to be working against the clear public sentiment that we must all do everything in our power to give the people of this country a fighting chance to remove the ruinous Zanu PF regime from power in 2018,” he said in a statement.
Chihwayi said the proposed coalition should be constructed in such a way that it provides a winning platform for its presidential candidate.
“We would have thought that some basic common sense dictates that winning parliamentary seats in whatever parts of the country and in whatever quantities is wholly irrelevant, to the primary question of garnering the requisite number of votes for the presidential candidate, which is what is required to cause a change of government,” he said.
In 2008 MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai defeated Mugabe, but failed to reach the required 50% plus one vote, only for the Zanu PF leader to force through a violent and blood-y run-off from which the opposition pulled out at the 11th hour.
Tsvangirai was tripped by Mavambo/Kusile/Dawn leader, Simba Makoni’s 8%.
Khupe on Thursday literally threw the cat among the pigeons after questioning the rationale of the proposed coalition stretching to areas in which the MDC-T already commands majorities.
“It is clear our gap is in Mashonaland East, West and Central, where we have consistently not done very well. So, when looking for a coalition partner, you must look for a partner, who is going to be able to cover
that gap,” she said, in comments critics say are aimed at ring-fencing the region she views as her political castle.
Khupe’s political star is waning following Tsvangirai’s decision to appoint two more deputies last year, a move seen as a vote of no confidence in the former deputy Prime Minister.
Tsvangirai has just concluded a 10-day consultative visit to Matabeleland and announced he had received overwhelming support for a coalition, especially with former Vice-President and Zimbabwe People First leader Joice Mujuru. There are reports of internal ructions over the proposed alliance within the MDC-T.