via Douglas Mwonzora chickens out – | Nehanda Radio Oct 11 2014
THE intriguing race to fill the vacant Movement for Democratic Change (MDC-T) secretary-general post took a radical turn this week with one of the top contenders, Douglas Mwonzora, making a sensational U-turn saying he was pulling out of the race.
Recently, Mwonzora was putting on a brave face and saying he was going on to contest.
He chickens out of the race with the congress only a few weeks from now after failing to garner nominations from 10 out of 12 local party provinces. He was trailing his fierce rival, the current organising secretary, Nelson Chamisa, who has swept through all the provinces. His exit leaves his opponent well poised to land the position considering that the only other contender, acting secretary general, Tapiwa Mashakada, has fared worse than Mwonzora.
For one to contest for any national leadership position at congress, they should be able to get nomination from at least one of the party’s 15 political provinces. The MDC-T has 12 local and three outside provinces namely the United States, the United Kingdom and South Africa, all of which should submit their preferred national leaders during the on-going provincial congresses.
Chamisa has now been nominated to the powerful position of secretary-general by all 10 local provinces that have held their congresses while Mwonzora claimed he had received nomination from the US province. He also claimed that although the other two outside provinces were yet to have their congresses, he knew that he had both of them in the bag. Mwonzora’s claims brew a storm in the country’s main opposition party with some top members saying the nomination was invalid.
All the 10 local provinces have nominated Mwonzora to retain his current position of spokesman of the party. When asked to explain why he had suddenly decided to change his mind since he had been adamant that he could run for the coveted post, Mwonzora said he was weighing his options carefully and the most likely decision would be to settle for his current position.
“I am getting nominations for the position of secretary for information and publicity which I currently hold from all the local provinces and it looks like people want me to remain in that position. Well, I will listen to what the people say. If the people want me to remain in that position, which appears to be the case, then, I will remain there,” Mwonzora said.
“There are certain circumstances surrounding certain nominations that I will have to make a careful consideration on. I think the best position would be arrived at once the entire nomination process has been concluded but I think nothing much is going to change,” he said. Mwonzora told the Financial Gazette that he was not happy with the ongoing nomination process which has been marred by irregularities, violence and allegations of rigging levelled at Chamisa.
Although Mwonzora himself refused to directly implicate the cunning youthful politician, he seemed to be worried by his alleged hand in the local provincial congresses.
“What I know is that there are some serious disputes in our local provincial congresses unlike the outside provinces. Internal nominations have had a lot of dynamics while the outside nomination is a pure nomination which is not influenced by anything. All of us are not there and not interacting with them and in my own view, it is the fairer nomination,” argued Mwonzora.
“This could help explain why I am getting nominations from the outside provinces as opposed to the local ones,” he added. No comment could be obtained from Chamisa as he was not picking up calls. Financial Gazette