MDC fight – The real story

via MDC fight – The real story – DailyNews Live. 8 June 20141

HARARE – A 25-page dossier  penned by the “Renewal Team” details a plan to overthrow MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai by destroying his “brand strength” and financial “resource base.”

Power point slides obtained by the Daily News yesterday, show that a group of rebels held a strategic meeting early this year where they came up with plans to boot out Tsvangirai.

Shockingly, the dossier does not once mention how they plan to fight Zanu PF.

The dossier emerges amid an intense media campaign to splash salacious details and allegations of Tsvangirai’s personal indiscretions across newspaper front pages for weeks, a move that has drawn the ire of MDC faithfuls.

Though no stranger to leadership challenge, this is the first revelation of serious inside action against the one-time premier and former trade union leader to impugn his personal standing, rather than his political dealings.

The dossier raises questions about Tsvangirai’s ability to govern the MDC effectively under mounting pressure, and comes at a time when he has been weakened by a fight between him and his ex-ally Tendai Biti, whose breakaway faction is going by the moniker “MDC Renewal Team”.

A spokesperson for Biti’s faction, Jacob Mafume, yesterday denied that the group had authored the document.

“We never authored that, it’s a fabrication,” Mafume told the Daily News.

“We are not strangers to this kind of thing. Remember TB (Tendai Biti) was arrested on a strength of fake documents authored by Zanu PF (in 2008). We see this as a continuation of that malicious agenda.”

However, observers said yesterday that plot did not come as a major surprise, as there was plenty of speculation about backroom dealing, supported by an unprecedented campaign to topple Tsvangirai in the wake of his failure last year to dislodge Zimbabwe’s 90-year-old leader, Robert Mugabe, from power.

The dossier also shows that Tsvangirai was presiding over a rancorous, unstable party and increasingly distracted by internal scheming against him ahead of last year’s poll.

Tsvangirai’s ouster was mooted in the dossier under four scenario narratives. There is the “Bvunurwa/MT Resurgence Scenario”, anchored on a strong brand and strong financial resource base, which was described as “highly undesirable” and “highly unlikely”.

The “Gonye/Slow Death Scenario”, is anchored on strong financial resource base and weak brand which was described as “likely but undesirable”;

Then there is the “Chimimba Mutekwe/Paralysis Scenario”, anchored on a strong brand and weak financial resource base which was described as “likely but undesirable”;

Then there was the preferred “Chaos/Marengenya Scenario”, anchored on Tsvangirai’s weak financial resource base and weak brand which was described as “likely and highly desirable.”

Elton Mangoma, a key member of the Renewal team, is credited as the first renewal leader to come out openly with the move to topple Tsvangirai, alleging that the MDC leader was now a hard-sell candidate who could not win elections because of his sexual indiscretions and alleged indecisiveness.

Insiders claim that this was the genesis of the “Marengenya Scenario,” an allegation strenuously denied by Mafume.

Mangoma penned an open letter to Tsvangirai in January, about the same time the “Renewal Team” dossier was authored, in which he asked Tsvangirai to resign, arguing that he had failed to push through reforms while in a four-year power-sharing government with Mugabe.

Mangoma was subsequently suspended in February, a move he challenged in court — and has continued criticising Tsvangirai in the media and at parallel party meetings.

Tsvangirai has long said there was a smear campaign based on groundless allegations against him which he has described as shameful and disgusting, with a subversive aim.

The dossier in the possession of the Daily News gives credence to the claim that the “Renewal Team” is at the centre of a secret plan to replace Tsvangirai, a move that began months before the leadership challenge.

It is not immediately clear who was running the plan, but slides of a PowerPoint presentation by the “Renewal Team” gave the green light in January to roll out the “Chaos/Marengenya scanario”.

The confidential 25-page document contains stunning proposals for wide-ranging shock therapy for the MDC.

The dossier details an “MT (Morgan Tsvangirai) brand depletion strategy.”

It notes that Tsvangirai had played “the victim card”, and that his “marital issues have been messy”.

“He is scandal-ridden, farm ownership, finances, properties,” the dossier adds, wondering further about the: “Key question, how do we leverage on this?

“At the moment the brand is not sufficiently eroded. How do we sufficiently erode brand MT?,” it says.

Other mooted strategies were:

*Financial squeeze
*Isolation of key political and technical pillars of support.
*Block possible sources of support and involve him in engaging them.
* Limit access and engagement with grassroots.
* Intensify social media campaign.
* Empower structures for advocacy.
* Compile and publicise dossier.
* Truth telling campaign.
* Grand coalition strategy — reaching out to other critical political players.”

The dossier also singles Nelson Chamisa as “the strongest pillar of support for MT” and his spokesperson Luke Tamborinyoka, both of whom needed to be targeted.

The dossier proposes using Chamisa “to create a divided opinion and divided social base.”

“NC (Nelson Chamisa) character heavily dented in 2013-primary elections,” the dossier says.

It details a plot by the Renewal Team to “manipulate” key media houses, notably the Daily News, NewsDay, Studio 7 and Nehanda Radio.

The dossier identifies “key people” in the media in their campaign as Daily News Group Editor Stanley Gama,  the paper’s News Editor Gift Phiri, Nehanda Radio managing editor Lance Guma, and a NewsDaystaff writer.  These journalists, claim the Renewal Team, were a threat to their agenda claiming they were close to Tsvangirai.

The Renewal Team saw “an opportunity” to use a weekly “friendly” newspaper  to spearhead its campaign given what was described as the paper’s revulsion against Tsvangirai.
The team was mooting “a robust media strategy.”

“He (Tamborinyoka) is not a strategic thinker — no telescopic mind,” the dossier says.

“Enjoys tactics and not strategies. Currently, he is enjoying the space and scope for hand-holding MT. Enjoys a collaborative relationship with MT. Needs to be isolated at all levels (financially, socially and politically).”

The dossier also speaks to the Renewal Team’s attempted alliance with civil society, which it, however noted was “currently in limbo, plagued by funding challenges”.

“This presents us an opportunity to leverage our support,” the dossier says.

“NCA project might fail to take off — divisions between Takura Zhangazha and Madhuku. No clear or viable think-tanks at the moment — IdaZim is dead.

“Need for a non-divisive re-engagement strategy with key civil society actors. We need to identify key pillars of MT support in civil society and engage them.”

The dossier says “the key variables that will determine MT survival are brand strength and resource base.”

The dossier exclusively focuses its energies on Tsvangirai, and not Zanu PF and yet the movement professes to be democratic — and that includes being strangely mute against the ruling party.


  • comment-avatar
    fatso 8 years ago

    Day dreaming,let them waste their resources the more they mock Morgen the more publicity they are giving him. The best way to claim our hearts is to put their strategies on removing this Tyrany not Morgen who is a nobody in our country. Mind you morgen is not running this country.

  • comment-avatar
    Reverend 8 years ago

    The soap opera continues….all you pathetic politicians zanu mdc and the rest are the same, just pathetic and you all need to be ashamed of yourselves, as you all have achieved nothing, you can not stop fighting amongst yourselves and in the process you have destroyed a great nation into a pig pen…you are all, yes all responsible you bunch of thieves, hypocrites, and vipers.

  • comment-avatar
    woundedbaffalo 8 years ago

    Vana biti manyura

  • comment-avatar
    Rwendo 8 years ago

    The circus will be in town, at the very least until the congresses.
    This latest chapter further fuels the confusion. As in: Is this really the Biti group? Or perhaps the authors of previous hits like the Ari Ben Menashe plot

  • comment-avatar
    akaxaxa 8 years ago

    If ever this is true, then the renewal team will soon become irrelevant. They have to invest their energies into making real change in the political landscape of the country than working to destroy Tsvangirai. It goes to show how shallow minded they are even though they claim to be the so,”educated” lot.

    The rallies they hold to denounce Tsvangirayi, likening him to Gumbura does not provide any solution to the economic woes of the country. Mudslinging tactics are never going to the bread and butter issues the people of Zimbabwe are longing for. This “ZANU PF” approach in politics of today is irrelevant and all those trooping to be part of the renewal team are busy positioning themselves to grab on any opportunities to plunder. One wonders how genuine this whole thing is. Kutsvagawo pekumora – typical of Zimbos yet the core issues remain unresolved. Working to destroy Tsvangirai and not the ZANU PF system that has brought the country on it’s knees goes to show Renewal Team is captained by a LUNATIC.

  • comment-avatar
    Straight Shooter 8 years ago

    The Gukurahundi ZANU PF’s 1979 Grand Plan against the people of Mthwakazi!!!