MDC-T hunts for Tsvangirai successor

via MDC-T hunts for Tsvangirai successor – The Standard by Patrice Makova September 15, 2013

MDC-T leader, Morgan Tsvangirai is mulling over a special congress for his party early next year in order to reinstate his legitimacy after losing the July 31 elections to President Robert Mugabe, it has emerged.

But senior officials in his party are already pushing for leadership renewal saying the MDC-T president was past his political prime time.

This comes amid widening cracks within the party, with different factions making accusations and counter-accusations on who was to blame for MDC-T’s heavy defeat at the hands of Mugabe and Zanu PF.

Some senior officials, notably self-exiled treasurer-general, Roy Bennett were already openly calling for a leadership renewal and Tsvangirai’s resignation.

Sources said Tsvangirai raised the issue of an early congress at a recent meeting of the MDC-T national standing committee.

A senior MDC-T official said Tsvangirai has also been consulting individual members of the national standing committee. He again raised the issue of a congress at the party’s national executive meeting on Friday.

“Tsvangirai knows that his rivals in the party are blaming him for the MDC-T loss. He no longer has the respect and confidence of some of his subordinates,” he said. “This is why he now wants an early congress, to resolve this leadership crisis and bury his rivals once and for all.”

An MDC-T national council member confirmed the proposal.

But he said the party was sharply divided over the issue, with some saying an early congress would likely further fragment the party.

“The fear is that we might not have an MDC-T to talk about come the 2018 elections,” said the party official.

He said Tsvangirai would go to the congress knowing that he still has popular support among the MDC-T supporters compared to any potential rivals.

“Tsvangirai will fight like a wounded buffalo. He will prevail, but the results of such a congress will be disastrous for the party,” said the official.

He said those who were supportive of the idea of a congress were secretary-general, Tendai Biti and national organising secretary Nelson Chamisa, who are both being touted as possible future successors of Tsvangirai.

“Biti and Chamisa appear to be daring each other, with each of them saying let’s go for an early congress,” said the official.

Bennett last week told South Africa’s Business Day that Tsvangirai’s continued stay in power did not reflect the will of the people, saying he has served two terms and was nearly completing a third one.

“Deep introspection needs to be undertaken by our national collective leadership, not for purposes of looking for scapegoats, but for our party to reinvigorate its leadership with a leadership which reflects the will of our people,” he said.

The MDC-T lost elections to Zanu PF amid allegations of imposition of candidates, arrogance, lack of tact and complacency by the party leadership. But the party still insists that Zanu PF rigged the elections, allegations which are yet to be proved.

MDC-T spokesperson, Douglas Mwonzora and deputy treasurer-general, Elton Mangoma were said to be opposed to an early congress.

Mwonzora yesterday said an early congress was out of the question, insisting the event was still set for 2016.

“The national executive and national council met yesterday [Friday]and resolved that our congress will be held in 2016,” he said.

Mwonzora however confirmed that the Friday meeting also discussed Bennett’s utterances.

He added Tsvangirai, who has led the party since formation in 1999, agreed that indeed the issue of leadership renewal must be openly debated within the MDC-T and by the public.

“However, there is also a need that leaders maintain discipline with regards to where they air their views. But more importantly, Tsvangirai said the issue of succession must be talked about,” he said.



  • comment-avatar
    Pachokwadi 11 years ago

    in Zimbabwe people want to be influential and will keep positions at all coasts. Vamugabe vofirapo panyanga. Tswangirai naye ngoma ndiyo ndiyo. Vandabaningi Sithole vakangonofirapowo. We should learn to give others a chance. You don’t have to leave your party. You can step down from leadership and still remain a valid member.

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    Tjingababili 11 years ago


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    Macon Pane 11 years ago

    Morgan is vital to the party, and should continue to be a part of the guidance, but sadly Pachokwadi seems to be correct… give someone a little power, and they’ll do whatever it takes to hold to it. Sounds like a familiar tune in Zim politics.

    So, who can be trusted to bring freedom, democracy, and the rule of law to Zim? Robert has proven himself unwilling… and now Morgan isn’t looking so good, either.

    Any ideas?

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      Moses 11 years ago

      Removing Tsvangirai the MDC leader will put the MDC in murky waters. That’s dancing to the ZANU PF tune. Where was the MDC executive when we went for elections without electoral & media reforms. The whole executive sh’d go if Tsvangirai is to be demoted. He has the support of the pple. Bennet should not bark from self exile. He must face the enemy

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        Ed Mrehwa 11 years ago

        That is the same reason Mugabe has stayed so long as ZANU leader ” Party unity???. What use is party unit if it does not deliver desired outcome. This is the right time to change the leadership team so that they have enough time to reorganise and rebuild before the next election. If its hard to change leaders while they are in opposition what chances are there once they have aquired government? Political party leadership change has never happened in Zim & this has to start like yesterday.

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    Sibangilizwe Lethube 11 years ago

    Guys don’t be fooled by zanu pf perpetrators. If Tsvangirai is removed from being the President of the party before there is a change in Zimbabwe then that will be a big blow to MDC-T.If Tsvangirai is to be replaced let it be done during the congress not through the media , which is the mouthpiece of zanu pf.Let Tsvangirai get into power first then hand over to the right person to take over, like what Mandela did.Guys what you have to realise is that Tsvangirai commands a lot of support in all the provinces therefore changing leadership at this stage will benefit zanu pf.That is why even zanu pf is struggling to remove their own mugabe because they know that he is the figure who is popular to their rural support which has been brainwashed.
    Those who are blaming Tsvangirai for the election defeat are just sellout from zanu pf who are trying to divide and destroy MDC-T.

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      Diego Zhaba 11 years ago

      Good focus, I guess all those advocating for Tsvangirai to go are not genuine MDC supporters. Some of them ihonye muparty, infiltrators bent to destroy the democratic revolution. Was Mugabe not beaten in the 2008 elections? Why didn’t he step down? Why were the results delayed by over two weeks to announce?

      Tisamhanya kuona kutadza kwaMorgan without a broader analysis of the situation in Zimbabwe. Look at the bigger picture than the outcome of the elections which we all know what happened. Once Morgan is gone ZANU reigns forever. I’m not saying ngaafirepo saMugabe but for continuity and lessons learnt and for the opposition face of the tyrant Mugabe, Tsvangirai managed to stand above the rest. Let’s constructively criticise him and build him up so that he can come out much more stronger and till then we then say chizorora, the democratic revolution has been won.

      It’s premature guys to let him go now. Bennert is entitled to his opinion just like me and you about the MDC leadership, but bear in mind he went into exile nekutya but Morgan soldiered on despite the circumstances. Saka Bennert kutaura from a distance without the pragmatic and tangible experiences of the issues is uncalled for. I suspect aakutengwa neZANU. They will cause madhisinyongoro to the demise of the MDC till crumbles into dust.

      Tisamhanya calling for this guy to go. We need to give him as much support as is necessary and work collective as a unified force to get to where we want while in the background other grow ad mature politically and be ready to take over.

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      Mwanawevhu 10 years ago

      No!!!Tsvangirai should have left a long time ago
      He has overstayed and is now a liability to the party and the nation. I don’t buy all that rubbish about one person being the heart and soul of the party. MDC is not a mafia party like Zanu PF.

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    Thembani 11 years ago

    Tsvangirai should go.He is Mugabe’s saviour.For as long as stays pretending to oppose ZANU, no change should be expected.Where in the civalise world do you find leaders for life except in the poorest countries of the world.Tsvangirai is not a God.He has failed.Enough is enough.

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    easily fooled 11 years ago

    Well said Lethube. The battle must be won first otherwise as MOREGAIN leaves the leadership position, there will be 6 to 10 MDC including MOREGAIN DEMOCRATIC CHANNEL led by Roy from diaspora…..its high time the boy must learn to align with real event on the ground in Zimbabwe than imagination

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      Diego Zhaba 11 years ago

      @easily fooled – thanks for a good insight in the politics dzedu.

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    UNIT K 11 years ago

    I am supprised by those talking of leadership renewal was it Tsvangirai’s fault if the elections were rigged but much as we know the result reflected by the July 31 Elections were not the real results as we all know.

    Since 2000 the MDC has been winning elections but as you all know the machinery that is there is just as bad as rotten apples, What happend in 2008 when elections were anounced 5 weeks later was it Tsvangira’s inept again look at your yourself and ask yourself leadership renewal will it help anything new Political Party MADHUKU DC even if they come into fray they will realised how dificult it is if they think it was a playing field like Gwanzura Stadium , what we anly say iz give it a try and we want to see how far you will go with your ambitions.

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    Phunyukabemphethe 11 years ago

    All the so-called possible future replacement of Tswangirayi are Shona. Typical of gukurahundi parties!!!

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      we must listen to the wishes of the people tsvangirai is tired of chasing wind give him a retirement package and roy must take over

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      Diego Zhaba 11 years ago

      @Phunyukabemphethe – you are missing the point and you are a REAL tribalist. You are demonstrating how shallow minded you are. And so why is Obert Mpofu, Jonathan Moyo, Simon Khaya Moyo aligning with the very perpetrators of gukurahundi??? Let’s be focused and not divert people’s minds on the issues at hand. NEVER HAS ANYONE here said it was good. And was this issue not on the MDC agenda??

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    NGUVA YEKUPEDZISIRA 11 years ago

    This is the time that Tsvangirai has to use so as to get world respect and as well be a dignified man, he has to follow Mandela’s steps and he will be the second most respected person on earth as well as in his own party

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    The issue of Congress is in the Party’s Constitution. Do not rush things AND don’t emotional. The people need to decide.

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    todii zvazvo 11 years ago

    Ko vacho vanozviti vanogona ngavafome yavo party tione kuti havaiti mazero here seZAPU neMDC -Ncube,

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    Shumba Liverpool 11 years ago

    Ndezvenyu izvo Tsvangison hapana kwanoenda. Zvechicabinet chemarara
    tsve…naye naye munhu ane mabhora maviri ndiaani ati ambomisana naMugabe wacho..tumapolitical analysis twenhema..iyo nyika ichingonyura mumadaka..

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    Guvnor 11 years ago

    Someone should take responsibility for the loss of the parliarmentary majority, blaming the other political party for sucessfully cheating is not good enough. It was simply a leadership and intelligence disaster on the part of MDC. An elective congress is a good way to clarify the matter.

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    tsvangirai should pass the barton,but what i personally think he should form an NGO (Morgan Tsvangirai Foundation)so as to keep fighting for civil rights in Zimbabwe.