MDC-T faces fresh turbulence

via MDC-T faces fresh turbulence – The Zimbabwe Independent August 22, 2014 by Wongai Zhangazha

Fresh cracks are set to rock the MDC-T after party vice-president Thokozani Khupe teamed up with senior officials to thwart leader Morgan Tsvangirai’s bid to centralise power.

Party officials this week told the Zimbabwe Independent that Khupe, along with party spokesperson Douglas Mwonzora and organising secretary Nelson Chamisa, vehemently opposed the idea of amending the MDC-T constitution to centralise power in the hands of the party leader.

Tsvangirai’s backers had proposed changes to the MDC-T constitution, which would among other things weaken the secretary-general’s authority, while allowing the president to appoint members of the standing committee.

The proposals include creating a second vice-president’s position.
The MDC-T is seeking to borrow from the Zanu PF template where President Robert Mugabe appoints the politburo and enjoys unfettered powers.

Tsvangirai is also said to be keen to limit the secretary-general’s powers as he believes the position gives the holder power to manipulate party structures. He has faced rebellion from two of his former secretaries-general in Welshman Ncube, who led a breakaway group in 2005, and Tendai Biti who was “expelled” from the party earlier this year and leads a splinter formation.

Khupe and other senior party officials are said to have mobilised the national executive to resist the recommendations at a national executive meeting held in Kadoma last week.

The proposed constitutional changes were shot down as they were demeed undemocratic.
Sources said the proposals were being pushed by MDC-T deputy chairperson Morgen Komichi, who is tipped for the second vice-presidency at the party congress to be held in October following the flight of top party leaders, among them Biti and deputy treasurer-general Elton Mangoma amid calls for leadership renewal.

Komichi has the backing of national executive member Morgan Femai for the position of party second vice-presidency.

However, a source privy to the goings-on in the party indicated that Komichi was at the forefront pushing for the constitutional changes that could give Tsvangirai unfettered powers.

“The prime mover is Komichi who claimed that he had travelled across the country and sought the views of party members and they had said they wanted the constitutional changes,” said the source who preferred anonymity.

Though Komichi is eyeing the vice-presidency, sources said Tsvangirai’s preferred candidate is Mufakose legislator Paurina Mpariwa, following his fallout with Khupe who has been blamed for the factional fights in Matabeleland and Bulawayo.

MDC-T national chairperson Lovemore Moyo is also targeting the same position.

“The party wants to make sure that there is regional and gender balance when electing the two deputy presidents. Femai wants to be appointed vice-chairman of the party. It’s just a little minority, a clique of unelectable people. It is insignificant but very dangerous because of the influence it has on Tsvangirai. If Tsvangirai is not careful, it can lead to another split in the party,” the source added.

Contacted for comment yesterday, Tsvangirai’s spokesperson Luke Tamborinyoka said the issues would be addressed at a press conference today.

In a statement last week, Tamborinyoka said the constitutional review had nothing to do with entrenching anyone’s position, but strengthening the party as an institution.

“As the current leader of our democratic party, president Tsvangirai will not allow the process to degenerate into the creation of all-powerful individuals, especially in the presidency,” he said. “Zimbabwe has sad stories to tell on the abuse of the powers of an executive president and we have learnt that autocracy is a monumental vice that cannot be mimicked, even in a party constitution.”

Party members are already jostling for posts with Women’s Assembly chairperson and now acting treasurer-general, Theresa Makone, vying for the treasurer’s post which is also eyed by current deputy secretary-general Tapiwa Mashakada.

Chamisa is said to be vying for the secretary-general’s post and is likely to fight it out with Mwonzora.


  • comment-avatar

    Why do there have to be two vice Presidents in a Party? Why copy Zanu in the first place? Any reasonable Party that wins a future election would be thinking of downsizing because of lack of resources. Zimbabwe has 31 Ministries. South Africa has 35.Nigeria has 19. Zambia has 22. Britain has 22.

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    Tsuro 9 years ago

    This is healthy debate and battle for the long term survival of MDC….let the fire burn.

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    Tozvirevakupiko 9 years ago

    I looked at MDC and then ZanuPF and then MDC and…. there was no difference other than ages!!!!!L.O.L!!!

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    avenger/revenger 9 years ago

    2008 sellouts. Nothing to offer just gossip. Like their zzpf erstwhile colleagues

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    Sonofngwazi 9 years ago

    MDC IS OVER!!!

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    Chiwoniso D 9 years ago

    They gonna lose the sypathy of the masses if they are not careful. People first. Dont dwell too much on power when not in power heyi.

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    Tjingababili 9 years ago


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    Africanson 9 years ago

    The MDC helped ZANU to screw our country. Both parties screwed our economy, zanu by corruption and mdc by campaigning for economic isolation. As aresult zimbabweans are losers today where jobs have dried up and everyone has been made desperate. Two evil camps who care more about power and less about the poor

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    mandy 9 years ago

    Komichi has become too ambitious. We all know that both Morgan Komichi and Morgan Femai are extremely dull people. The office of Vice President cannot be abused for rewarding people whose only skills are profane dances at rallies. Surely Zimbabwe does not deserve another Muzenda in the high offices. One fool in a long generation is enough. What do Komichi and Femai stand for anyway.

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    easily fooled 9 years ago

    The pple of Zimbabwe needs the MDC more than the reverse. Despite it short comings, thus the only potential route to setting Zimbabwe free….of course it will not be overnight but there is no viable alternative now nor in the next couple of years to come. 40 year olds and more are a wasted generation.

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    Munya 9 years ago

    Why so many Morgans? Morgan Tsvangirai, Morgan Komichi, Morgan Femai, etc. Havana njere vanhu ava. Chavo kuita mbiri nokurobwa chete.

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    thembani 9 years ago

    Khuphe for MDC president.

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      Straight Shooter 9 years ago

      Really? In Shona Gukurahundi Zimbabwe, really? You believe this or you are just joking?

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    Rocks tone 9 years ago

    Why does MDC members always battles for positions & forgeting their trend of change ?, people want change through good governance by deligent & decisive leaders . If they continue to runn their political game this way they will be bound to fall into oblivion .