Tsvangirai suffers huge setback

via Tsvangirai suffers huge setback 19 September 2014

THE MDC-T national council on Friday rejected constitutional proposals that were reportedly being pushed by party leader Morgan Tsvangirai.

The proposals would have whittled the powers of the secretary general and concentrated power in the office of the president. They would also have allowed Tsvangirai to appoint key personnel.

In a statement to the press yesterday following the conclusion of marathon meetings that began Thursday, MDC-T spokesman, Douglas Mwonzora, said the proposals had been “roundly rejected”.

“The national executive made far reaching recommendations that were further debated by the national council,” Mwonzora said.

“Among the key resolutions made after protracted debate in line with our democratic tradition are, the 14 standing committee members, including the president, will be directly elected by the people at congress.

“What we identified as the executive is that the source of abuse of office by the secretary generals has not been, per se, as a result of the powers enshrined in the constitution, it has been a combination of personal attitudes and personal inclinations.”

He added: “It has also been because of the vagueness of the office and the powers of the secretary general. We have sought to make these powers specific; we have also sought to define the constitution.”

The proposal to whittle down the powers of the secretary general came after former secretary general Tendai Biti and deputy treasurer, Elton Mangoma, led a putsch against Tsvangirai in April demanding leadership renewal within the party.

Tsvangirai responded by seeking to railroad a raft of constitutional changes that would have seen the elective congress in October electing at most the party’s “top six” while the rest of the executive was to be appointed by the president from a pool elected by the same congress.

The former prime minister and his backers have been arguing the splits that have bedeviled the party since its formation in 1999 stemmed from the “two centres of power” created by an elected secretary general who had more powers than the president.

Tsvangirai was in charge when another secretary general, Welshman Ncube, led another split in 2005.

There has been a growing antagonism within the party against lawyers and Tsvangirai’s problems have been compounded by the fact that the front-runners to the post in the coming congress, Douglas Mwonzora and Nelson Chamisa, are trained lawyers.

Regarding the issue of two deputy presidents, Mwonzora told journalists that the idea was a waste of money that had been created by Zanu PF to appease its Zapu counterparts.

“To us it is a waste of national resources and therefore the idea was totally rejected by the national executive.

“Both the national executive and national council unreservedly rejected the idea because it is alien to us as a democratic movement,” he said.

President Robert Mugabe and then Zapu leader Joshua Nkomo introduced the two vice-presidents model following the merger of their parties in 1987 after civil strife in the Matabeleland regions.

Tsvangirai a few months ago told a foreign-based radio station in an interview that “the party given its experience with splits led by secretary generals needed to have a re-look at the post with a view of bringing stability and direction to leadership and avoid future occurrences”.


  • comment-avatar

    Zimbabwe is cursed with nonsence congresses rubbish workshops endless jostling for party positions and countless armchair academics advertising their naive gullibility and self proclaimed experts. No wonder that………. !!!!!!!!!!!!

  • comment-avatar
    Swagman 8 years ago

    None of these opposition
    leaders from Tsvangarai
    down, will ever succeed
    against Mugarbage and Nikux
    if there’s infighting, dissent,
    splits and division!

    Get your acts together, forget
    the internal stuff and look
    to the ‘enemy’ – Mugarbage!

  • comment-avatar
    jobolinko 8 years ago

    i think its democracy not huge setback

  • comment-avatar
    Tjingababili 8 years ago


  • comment-avatar
    bruce Koffe 8 years ago

    Desire for centralising powers in the party presidency is not for Tsvangirai but for any other party president in order to reign with some authority and avoid stooges and cowards as seen before. ZANU PF realised this long time ago during the liberation struggle and centeralised power in first secretary. The idea of having two centres of powers are only advisible amongst intellectually, economically and honest developed people not the kind that is present in all MDCs, MDK, and ZANU PF. People are easily intimidated by CIO, ZRP, and soliders to betray the very cause of the revolution. As such, such are the like of Ncube, Biti and Mangoma. They split MDCs and caused so much suffering for no reason except fear of initimidation from CIOs. Its clear that Ncube and Biti never have strong reasons of their on to breakaway from main stream MDC but ZANU PF fears the united opposition to the extend that they come up with stooges in the like of Ncube, Simba Makoni, Biti to divide the electorate. This way they will have an opportunity to temper with election process just like they did in 1990s with Zum, 2002, 2008, 2013. Now ZANU PF realise that Ncube is finished they are trying Biti and partners.

  • comment-avatar
    Phunyukabemphethe 8 years ago

    Its good the Shona Gukurahundi tribalist thug Tsvangirayi has failed. A real idiot indeed. Copying everything that his ancestor Mugabe does. What a piece of Sh*t!!!