MDC’s implosion bodes ill for Zimbabwe

via MDC’s implosion bodes ill for Zim – Africa | IOL News May 4 2014 By Peta Thornycroft

The accelerating disintegration of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) party is apparently returning Zimbabwe to effective one-party statism.

Even before the latest leadership row rocked the MDC this week, the party had become a shadow of its March 2008 self, when it beat Zanu-PF in the legislative elections and its leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, beat Robert Mugabe in the presidential contest.

Now Tsvangirai is at the nadir of his long political life, during which he has endured much suffering and humiliation, both personal and professional. There seems no way out of the hole in which he and his party find themselves.

Last week, 10 MPs led by MP and secretary-general Tendai Biti claimed to have expelled Tsvangirai and several of his lieutenants from their positions in the party.

Tsvangirai and his faction retaliated this week by passing a resolution to approach the speaker of parliament to demand that he expel Biti and nine other dissident MDC MPs from parliament.

This move to get rid of them in parliament would reduce the MDC’s seats to 39 against 149 Zanu-PF MPs. The MDC strongly disputed Zanu-PF’s massive election victory last year after the pro-Zanu-PF registrar-general Tobaiwa Mudede illegally refused to release the electronic version of the voters roll.

The expulsion of the Biti group of MPs would also open the way for by-elections, when Tsvangirai’s MDC would then have to compete against Biti and his colleagues and the ruling Zanu-PF party, at a time when all MDC factions say they have no money.

Parliament is supposed to provide funds to all political parties represented in the House of Assembly, but so far no party has officially received any government funds, including Zanu-PF.

But it controls state media and resources, and records show it always uses state infrastructure to promote itself during election time.

Luke Tamborinyoka, Tsvangirai’s spokesman, said on Friday the decision to expel the MPs and other senior party members was taken by the national council, which is empowered to do so by the party’s constitution.

He said he did not speak for the party, so he was not sure whether the resolution would be carried out.

“The MDC will not die as a political party. It is unfortunate that some colleagues have chosen to go away, but the party will stay very much alive, and is the only hope for the people of Zimbabwe.”

Party spokesman Douglas Mwonzora was not available for comment, nor were Biti or Elton Mangoma, the former deputy treasurer, who was expelled by the MDC last month.

That precipitated the latest bust-up that could destroy the party.

Mangoma had written to Tsvangirai asking him to call an early congress, as its next one is due only in 2016, to elect a new leader.

His letter, in which he complained about Tsvangirai’s leadership and his personal life, was leaked to the Zimbabwean media.

Ibbo Mandaza, a political analyst and academic, this week said the “implosion” of the MDC was dangerous for Zimbabwe as a whole.

“We hope Tsvangirai and his colleagues will resolve their differences sooner rather than later, for the good of this country.”


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39 comments on “MDC’s implosion bodes ill for Zimbabwe
  1. Roving Eagle says:

    If you repeat a lie too often you end up believing it to be true. There already has been too much repetition that zpf won the July 31 elections- a horrible insult to Zimbabweans. mugabe could not even campaign, had nothing to offer and has offered nothing as expected. To then keep repeating the lie that Zimbabweans are so stupid to go out in large numbers to re-elect a failed 90 year old is the worst insult the nation is being made to take. His supposed win was met with dismay instead of joy from the supposed huge majority of his bogus win. MDC has not gotten weaker hence the concerted effort by zpf to create confusion in MDC. We now know why when other leaders were being beaten, almost killed biti remained untouched. He has now shown his true colors and the party can only be much stronger after ridding itself of a sellout.

    • Nzou says:


      So do we assume, from your stunningly unintelligent analysis, that people like Coltart and Welshman Ncube are also suspect?

      Must we suspect that anyone who hasn’t been attacked by zanoids must be suspect?

      Or are you just singing for your MDC-T supper?

      • Roving Eagle says:

        Wow is it news to you that ncube is zpf through and through. Does it need repeating that ncube participated in the elections not because he had any hope of winning but to prevent MDC-T from boycotting the elections. He was the educated one, to first break away, what happened to his party? How come his party was not a shinning example of good leadership?

      • Ngoto Zimbwa says:

        Amazing response from you Nzou.

        Of course Ncube is suspect.
        Man destroyed any chance the nation had of unseating ZANU in 2008 by his antics.
        That alone puts him in the ZANU stooge camp.

  2. Tjingababili says:


  3. Mahlaba says:

    Roving you are dead right. How can a man criticise a manifesto he prepared himself? For Biti even blind would see that he was long bought.

  4. Frankie Laine says:

    The MDC has been mortally wounded. The open revolt of a Secretary-General in any party is a major event. Biti is no lightweight no matter what you think of him personally. If the MDC could not overcome ZANU-PF in three elections (whether rigged or not) means that to try again using the same methods and expect a different result is a sign of insanity.
    At this time it seems as though Zimbabwe has no leader or party that can challenge ZANU-PF. To shout for the people to stand up and take control of their destiny is also not the answer as the so-called Arab Spring, the Libyan conflict and now the Kiev revolution proves. Where are the leaders of days gone by who could hold a nation together by just their physical presence and inner strength?
    Its time, Zimbabwe to look within your borders and find a leader who can lead you out of this wilderness. Do not look back, it does not serve any purpose. Look forward and become a nation again. Pray that God will raise up a leader who will have that special annointed mandate to pull Zimbabwe through the swamp and place her feet on solid ground. Rise Zimbabwe rise.

    • Roving Eagle says:

      How do you win a rigged election. MDC-T won each time they went into elections. zpf cannot rig elections they have won.

  5. munzwa says:

    well said Frankie….fresh ideas….

  6. Melody says:

    Nations get leaders they deserve. We deserve the lot we have …your Mugabes and Tsvangirais.

    Its not their fault its ours. Those two men were once patriotic, fearless and truly carrying the cause. Now what has happened? We put them on pedestals and let them believe they are Gods among men; supermen. Now all they are doing confirming the same to us.

    Its sad we don’t realise that we are the creators of these monsters because of our naivety.

    Anyone who dares to challenge these “Gods” is branded anti-movement…

    Look at the best democracies… Recently…the Prime Minister of S.Korea resigned over a ferry accident which killed school children. Here in Zim a man who has been at the helm for 34years still believes no one can offer anything better. And now we have an MDC leader whose leadership forces a nation to go to an election without a voter’s roll. He has failed on 3counts to win an election and still want us to believe he has one more trick to pull out of his hat. AND we believe him and defend him.

    • Gomogranny says:

      Melody how right you are. We are to blame….pedestals are not the place for politicians. We Zimbabweans are so bad at making a decision and taking action…and then taking responsibility for that action.

  7. I am not the one! says:

    MDC’s demise bodes ill for Zim my *rse! The country is already down the drain and the MDC is the next wave of self entitled pigs waiting to finally break and destroy the trough in their vain attempt to find any pickings that zanu became too fat and lazy to take, which basically means they will get NOTHING! When the MDC realise that to run a country, they will actually have to work, take responsibility, reach targets and goals, respond to the electorate etc etc they will soon lose interest and the cycle will repeat itself!

  8. danisa tshawe says:

    thanks God I am not a Zimbabwean. kkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk

    • roving ambassador. says:

      Tshawe, here this from me , It does not matter where you are, in Africa, this will catch up with you unless it has already done so and you are too blind to see. In Europe or anywhere else, When you hit 50, you start realising you have your home and your home is your inheritance and someone else is messing around with your inheritance . You want to go back or you have already gone back but there is nothing homely about it because it has been destroyed.
      You want to leave something for your children like a good father or mother would do.
      It downs on you that the reason you are here on earth is to look after God ‘s inheritance for the future of our children.
      Destroyers forced themselves into office and we must get them out.
      The power is in us to put the people ‘s Officers into office.

  9. Danboy True Zimbo says:

    Tswangson has an open zip policy. Neither Biti nor Welshman could stand this ignoramus. He may be brave but his head is empty. The sooner Chamisa and company part ways with him the better.

    • Gomogranny says:

      There is more than one open zip….Mr. Playboy Biti is not averse to a little of that policy. He too lacks the discipline in his personal life….never will be make much of being a civil servant.

  10. roving ambassador. says:

    I have read an article on the Mayor of Kwekwe who was offered $68000 to buy a car. He refused and goes around on a bike. I do not know which party he hails from because its not relevant since both leaders of the parties do the exact opposite.
    He says ,when there is potholes and the water is not clean, its not wise to use the money on cars.
    In Uruguay[or Paraguay] ,The president lives in his house in ‘Pelandaba’, lives among the common people. No motorcades or bus loads of soldiers. NO bunch of praise singers and worshipers. Just an ordinary person interested in the upkeep of his nationals.
    In Mugabe and Tsvangirai we have unfortunately glorified , egocentric , self-centred pumpkin heads who believe the world will stop rotating without them.
    We need humble mature and honest leadership to take us to the next level.
    Forget about this lot.
    Bunch of failures.

  11. Straight Shooter says:

    This MDC-T implosion is good for Zim Peta Thornycroft. Zim people will from this saga learn to support leaders on the basis of principles; not affection, emotional attachment and tribal,language and regional identities.

    A leader should commit himself to his people, his country without expecting to be repaid. This is what leadership is all about – the legacy of Nelson Mandela that people like Tsvangirayi should take to heart instead of pretending to be democrats and nation builders when they are not!

  12. Mixed Race says:

    @roving ambassador-well said you cannot runaway from your political problems forever.@Melody and @Frankie Laine,both of you have said it better than me.The time will come when the majority will realise that patronage and cheap tribal behaviour is not the way to go,then things will change,eg when ZANU-PF realised that violence does not work they transformed their 2013 election method which made many MDC-T supporters to quietly switch over with serious outcome results.Violence does not work as stated above by clever contributors to the debate using the Arabs and others as living examples.

    • Roving Eagle says:

      Mixed Race your analysis says Zimbabweans are extremely stupid. For surely if you believe they would rather switch silently to zpf, a party that thoroughly failed them than try MDC that had given them a glimmer of hope in GNU, all because of the MT’s problems, then they are stupid beyond redemption. If zpf’s colossal failure cannot move the people to reject them as you imply then good leadership on the part of the opposition,any opposition, has no chance of effecting change. zpf loses elections not because of what the opposition does but because they are a complete failure at running the country, they then rig elections and claim to have won not on their strengths but opposition weaknesses.

      • Roving Ambassador says:

        Roving, I have to say it again for people to realize what’s happening here. We have lost faith in the MDC,we gave them enough rope and they truly hung themselves. After elections 2008 no doubt Mdc won. Cries from the wilderness were heard,’ don’t join the ZANU grave train ,you will be swallowed’.The trappings of office were to tempting ,no one listened.ZANU would have collapsed then . The MDC propped up the regime on the pretext of saving the nation. The big question is where are we now?
        Then in the Gnu the process of deception stated, we were told Mugabe was reformed and ready to hand over power.All these revelations over a cup of tea. After warnings not to sup with the devil. The MDC then went around the world telling all to come home and build since it was all OK. Faith betrayed.
        Reforms, reforms, The battling teams would fail to reach agreement and the Principal s would then meet and guess who the spokesperson would be. I would like to point out Ncube not included. Everything discussed would come out in ZANU colours. Can anyone tell me who was Zanufied?
        Election time, there was no money to print the ballot papers and the voters role was in shambles. ZANU came up with the ballot papers and could not find the voters role. In This case the 2 Mdc misled the povo again and allowed the elections to go ahead. The Zanufication of the MDC was complete.
        Do we really want ZANU and the MDC to be custodian s of our inheritance?
        If you can not get it , I am prepared to elaborate over and over until the eyes and ears give up.

        • Roving Ambassador the Political landscape in Zimbabwe has been manipulated by Zanu pf to the extent that they are in a position to twist and turn even SADEC as they please. They even nullified arbitration bodies with in Sadec. My own opinion is that I will always vote. When I do I will in the absence of a better alternative I will vote for the best available alternative. If Zanu pf changes some of it’s people that have caused so much harm I could look at them as an alternative. At the rate they are moving I would most likely have to wait for donkeys to grow horns. I don’t for a minute believe they have changed their violent ways. Gandhi once said “It is better to be violent, if there is violence in our hearts, than to put on the cloak of non violence to cover impotence.”

        • Roving Eagle says:

          I agree with you, if I am digging your gist, that we are unfortunate that the so called intellectuals in MDC turn out to be zpf. I can imagine what would have happened if MT had resigned and tendai biti (TB) or sipepa nkomo(SIN) had taken over. Given that they blame the so called loss on MDC than what it is, a rigged election, they surely would have quickly conceded the election and zanufication would have been complete as you say. Given MDC’s inherent internal weaknesses and that zpf invests heavily in making sure the opposition is not strong, there is little to no hope of salvation coming from MDC. That said, we are already spending invaluable time discussing MDC when focus should be on zpf failures. ZUNDE is the only hope but they are still in formative stages and there is still lot of work to connect with the masses.

          • Roving Eagle I agree with you.I think there might still be some hope for change in the MDC now that it is known who is Jack and who is Jill. If they must recover from this they must hear the people. They’ve heard before. Your sentiments on Zunde again will make sense as we support political partys by the paths they choose. When they changes we change. Especially if we see they going the wrong way. Alot of MDC supporters were once Zanu or Zapu, even UANC. They changed because of Zanus Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder OF U turning all the time and breaking promises.

  13. Hutu says:

    My opinion is that Zanu pf will never let anyone operate in Zimbabwe. They treat it as if it is their own property. If I would have seen some of the corrupt people and corrupt policemen that have been exposed recently being prosecuted I would of then said “Hang on a minute, something good is going on here” Nothing, totally nothing. They just continue to steal and then start making statements to look good. The people will not be fooled for any longer. They have seen the damage these crooks have done in 34 years.The only reason this last election was free of violence is because they knew what they done and they wanted Sadec to endorse the result. They have not abandoned their violence as they continue to beat up and detain WOZA members. I just feel sorry for those that think their comforts and corruption under this regime will go on for ever. Just ask Saif al-Islam Gaddafi.

    • Roving Eagle says:

      Well said, to blame opposition for not taking power when zpf will never let go peacefully is to fall into zpf trap. Zimbabwe has a violent party in power and a docile populace and opposition.

  14. Hutu says:

    My opinion is that Zanu pf will never let anyone operate in Zimbabwe. They treat it as if it is their own property. If I would have seen some of the corrupt people and corrupt policemen that have been exposed recently being prosecuted I would of then said “Hang on a minute, something good is going on here” Nothing, totally nothing. They just continue to steal and then start making statements to look good. The people will not be fooled for any longer. They have seen the damage these crooks have done in 34 years.The only reason this last election was free of violence is because they knew what they done and they wanted Sadec to endorse the result. They have not abandoned their violence as they continue to beat up and detain WOZA members. I just feel sorry for those that think their comforts and corruption under this regime will go on for ever. Just ask Saif al-Islam Gaddafi. He knows now.

  15. Ngoto Zimbwa says:

    The MDC and Tsvangirai are the root cause of all our problems now, are they?

    That seems to be the main thrust of observations so far.
    ZANU must be smiling all the way.

    ZANU has the army, the police the charlie guys, the brainwashed war vets and the judges on its side, all working to destroy the MDC.
    Unseating these morons was never going to be easy.
    Add to that a zim public that’s so gutless it makes one want to puke and any leader of the opposition is onto a thankless task.

    • Roving Eagle says:

      Exactly Ngoto, and to think that so educated in MDC could fail to understand this simple logic makes leading opposition in Zimbabwe a daunting task.

  16. Ngoto Zimbwa There is no way that that would be true. Here is the cause of our problems.1 The war in the Congo,2 The uncontrolled farm invasions, 3 Delay in dealing with the War Vet situation earlier,that is printing money to pay the bonuses.4 The free for all corruption by the ruling party 5 The de-industrialization of Bulawayo. 6 Giving unqualified relatives and friends positions of trust that they we not suited for. Looting of NRZ, AIR ZIMBABWE, COLD STORAGE COMMISSION and GMB. I could go on and on and none of these things were caused by the MDC. They are just guilty of getting cheated all the time.

  17. Mixed Race says:

    @Roving Eagle and @Doctor do little spot on comments however I still believe that the masses have to be well informed to make informed decisions to vote for candidates with clean personal records and trust worth.

    • Roving Eagle says:

      Agreed @Mixed Race though sometimes a break is what is more important. Zambia got their break through Chilumba and they have had changes in leadership ever since. Zimbabwe desperately needs a break from zpf.

  18. Mixed Race says:

    @Roving Eagle-agreed however peaceful change has to come about by making the masses realise that cheap propaganda using food, plates and many other items are only short term gains whilst their votes have long term repercussions.Mat people have realised that,thus why the other party will never get many votes but I know for sure that the ruling party had strong support in Mashonaland eg MDC-T people failed even to convince vendors at Mbare,remember when some of their campaigners were chased by those vendors there,which the party laughed off,but those were early signs of losing support.Yes some people like to believe what they want instead of the real truth.Our short memories deceive us with serious repercussions.

  19. Ngoto Zimbwa says:

    Mixed Raced,
    Was there any celebration in Mbare when ZANU won?
    The atmosphere was funereal.

    Now you go figure.

  20. Mixed Race says:

    @Ngoto Zimbwa-I think they were under instructions not to celebrate openly to avoid possible clashes with outside monitors still in the country.When I made a trip to Harare two days after the results were out to see how it was like there,I was shocked to hear from those who always said to me they would vote MDC-T,telling me that they voted for those who would indeginise industries immediately.This is why I believe the indeginisation policy worked for the ZANU-PF.

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