MDC extends olive branch to rebels

HARARE - The MDC reiterated yesterday that it was willing to hold talks with party rebels it accuses of leading a coup bid against its leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, and denied that there had been moves to purge dissenters.

Tsvangirai’s supporters have been at loggerheads with members calling for leadership renewal in the party, since the MDC’s disputed electoral defeat in last year’s national polls, including suspended deputy treasurer general Elton Mangoma.

In an interview with the Daily News yesterday, MDC organising secretary Nelson Chamisa denied that either Tsvangirai or other party leaders were hellbent on settling scores  and purging those party members who were effectively working to topple the MDC leader.

Among these members are Mangoma, who was recently suspended after he sent two open letters to Tsvangirai asking him to resign because he was now allegedly “a hard-sell candidate” in the next polls slated for 2018 because of his personal indiscretions and his failure to push through necessary national reforms while the MDC was in the four-year power-sharing government with President Robert Mugabe and Zanu PF.

Mangoma also alleged that Tsvangirai was behind his assault outside Harvest House a few weeks ago while he was emerging from a party meeting. He has since filed a police report on this matter leading to the arrest of a number of party youths.

However, Tsvangirai has vehemently denied the accusations.

But Chamisa categorically said yesterday that none of the party members fingered for creating confusion in the party, including those calling for Tsvangirai’s ouster, had been fired from the party.

He said Mangoma and eccentric Manicaland provincial spokesman Pishayi Muchauraya had only been suspended pending internal disciplinary processes.

“No one has been dismissed from the party. Mangoma’s matter is now at the disciplinary tribunal and the party is in the same mode as it has always been. We are focusing on real challenges that are affecting the people of Zimbabwe, the problems of a non-functioning economy and non-functioning government.

“This is not the time to mark the next man. We must mark the ball. We cannot afford own goals at this particular time. It is Zanu PF which says bhora mugedhi not us,” he said.

Last month,  Tsvangirai moved to douse the internal strife, announcing at a Press conference that “the problems in the cockpit” — code for leadership — that were affecting the party had been resolved.

The MDC leader, who went on to describe as “significant” the coming together of the “warring” parties, said a meeting of the Standing Committee that had been convened prior to the Press conference had pulled the party back from the brink.

Tsvangirai said he “had realised that it was important for us to sit down as a party leadership to openly discuss and sort out our issues”.

“I am proud to announce today that we have discussed our issues and there is now unprecedented harmony and unity of purpose in the MDC cockpit,” he said then.

But Mangoma and a team of his loyalists on Saturday appeared to rule out working with Tsvangirai, revealing intensified strategies to dethrone the charismatic MDC leader. Addressing journalists in Harare at the weekend, Mangoma’s spokesperson Jacob Mafume, who was flanked by MDC youth assembly secretary general Promise Mkwananzi and introduced as the “MDC renewal team spokesperson”, said the purported unity between the rebels and Tsvangirai was a farce.

“So you don’t say I am uniting when you don’t call the people you are aggrieved with, the people who have been suspended in the provinces.

The provincial executives that have been illegally dissolved, those are the people you unite with and not with your friends as it were,” he said.

But Chamisa said there were no provincial executives that were suspended, even though there was an attempted putsch of the leadership by some structures.

But Mafume insisted that Tsvangirai had personalised the democratic struggle and was acting as if he owned the MDC.

“When you are elected to be a president of a country, you are not given title deeds, same as a political party. What happens is that you are given responsibility that you are supposed to carry out. When that responsibility is questioned, you don’t behave like someone is taking your personal property,” he said.

Mafume also alleged that Tsvangirai had deviated from the party’s core values.

In the meantime, a damning MDC dossier seen by the Daily News claims that Zanu PF is working with  others to dethrone Tsvangirai.

Some Western embassies are also named in the report as having allegedly pulled together millions of dollars to help the coalition of MDC rebels and Zanu PF to oust Tsvangirai.

But both Mangoma and Zanu PF have strenuously rejected the accusations.

The authors of the sensational dossier claim that Zanu PF does not want to face the MDC leader in the 2018 polls, which President Robert Mugabe is unlikely to participate in due to advanced age and poor health.

Comments (22)

I don't think the media are doing a good job of reporting the goings on in the MDC. As in this article there are always insinuations that Mangoma was suspended for writing a letter to Tsvangirai. The 2 are related yes, but the suspension is for disobeying a party directive not to continue discussing the matter in the media. Is it at all possible to be factual, and not try to create news that fans the fires of misinformation?

Tutume - 10 April 2014

Famba Tsvangson famba hende!! Do not pay attention to rubble rouses!!! Our target is to remove rotten policy makers from the driving seat and put sanity to the dilapidated state. No easy walk to liberty. Vafana mose muri kungofamba panze apo,teererai, HAMUFI MAKASEVENZA KANA TICHITEVERA MAPOLICY ARIPO!!!! this guy tsvangson ane mapolicy ari nane ane tariro.

herber - 10 April 2014

What an idiotic statement, “…the sensational dossier claim that Zanu PF does not want to face the MDC leader in the 2018 polls, which President Robert Mugabe is unlikely to participate in due to advanced age and poor health”. Morgan Tsvangirai poses the least threat to ZanuPF in any elections anywhere, anytime. I just don't see him posing a threat to ZanuPF in his lifetime. Nothing much has changed. Morgan is till dumb Morgan. And MDC-T is still useless MDC-T.

Musona - 10 April 2014

It is more than a fact that Morgan has been and remains the most dangerous politician to ZanuPF - The reasons are that he is the first to beat Robert Mugabe in an election ( first round in 2008) before ZanuPF deployed the army to kill ordinary Zimbabweans! This was after he beat the same man in a referendum in 1999 on a draft constitution. Nobody else has such a CV as far as I remember. It goes without saying that if Mudede could pay Nikuv more than US$ 13 million inside six months (January and July 2013), it boggles the mind why he cannot pay less than a thousand dollars to repair the servers with the electronic voters roll? If you have a bit of grey matter between your ears Musona, you should be appreciating the degree of rigging that went on on July 2013 or else you are a moron?

chiremba wemberengwa - 10 April 2014

Imi vakomana, only fools will remain in a sinking ship and recounting old stories of its performance will not save it. Why insist on being led by Tvangison, kumaChinja hakunavo vari nani here??

Don Wezhira - 10 April 2014

Don Wezhira you are confused. Siyana naTsvangi, Form your own party as well. Musona, you are the one who is useless. Suka

Kunaka - 10 April 2014

MDC-T have a chance in future elections. They should do do two basic things. Acknowledging and embracing liberation war veterans, and also getting rid of that wreckage of a prime minister.

machakachaka - 10 April 2014

We read more about Tsvangirai in all newspapers, public and private than any other person which just shows how popular he is. Those that choose to mislead themselves saying he is a nobody can carry on, knowing though deep inside that they are scared and respect him. The masses are behind you Tsvangirai, all the rigged elections since 2000 are the proof.

Dr Know - 10 April 2014

Confusion in Mdc-t is being caused by the way Chamisa held Primary elections moreover the blinders he did contributed a big loss.Even if thy claim tht we where rig the milion dollar question is how?and when ?when we had our our agents in the process.For us to go foward lets do a self introspection on why we whre trounced and pick the peaces from thre

youths - 10 April 2014

@Dr Know, the alternative is equal true, we read about him because he is notoriously infamous, we read about the Bulawayo girl, Locadia and the huge sums of money , Macheka's story, the lady from SA, nyaya dzake dzoku Tiperrary, muma Avenues! Kutuka vambuya parally, threats dze violence, kurambira pachigaro, beating and firing Mangoma and Wannanchi!!!

Don Wezhira - 10 April 2014

Manje hameno ikoko hamenoooo!

Chaitichouya Chikopokopo - 10 April 2014

In any organization feuding will not bring any results. By accommodating so-called rebels the MDC-T is just doing the right thing. This is why your enemies are ferreting about continuing in disunity. Divided you'll tumble, crush and disintegrate. Please do the right thing and save true democracy.

Regalia - 10 April 2014

Honestly I do not know how to explain to people how African politics work. Political names take long to sell and be bought and take long to make again. Do you know the reason why Mugabe did not step down when the MDC was formed in 1999? This was because there was no other saleable name in ZPF to stand the challenge of Morgan T. Until Morgan gets out of the picture ZPF is afraid of naming a successor. So all those clamouring the removal of Morgan are playing into the hands of Zanu PF. Do you think chembere dzirikumusha ako mukatanga kudzitaurira kuti vhoterai Biti kana Mangoma for President dzingazvinzwa? Never! ZPF can even fund and assist all those crying for leadership renewal in the MDC because they know that is the end of the MDC and the great revival of ZPF without any strong challenge from anyone. So next time if I hear anyone supporting leadership renewal in the MDC I would love to hear the same person talking and supporting of leadership renewal in ZPF. Who needs resting here? Someone who has been in power for 34 years and someone who has been leader of the party for only 15 years.

charles charingeno - 10 April 2014

Guys like one reader has already said yuo cannot hang on to a sinking ship you will drown with it . Accept change guys . Why has your constitution been changed . Your constitution clearly stated that all leaders will take charge for two terms and now whats wrong if someone needs to take over from some one who has failed .

Mose Ruddolf ( Hitler) - 10 April 2014

This is the party which convinced me kuti Mangoma is a daft politician, one who was in the thick of things but now want to blame others. This part "his failure to push through necessary national reforms while the MDC was in the four-year power-sharing government with President Robert Mugabe and Zanu PF." What was he doing himself to push for this, busy at his ZanuPf donated farm.

Maita Manyuka - 10 April 2014

@Hitler, I have given you a challenging question you have not addressed. Which leadership needs change, the one for 34 years and the one for 15 years. The one for 15 years should stay to fight the 34 years that is too cynical and conservative!

charles charingeno - 10 April 2014

washuzhira kure mangoma unonosvika kumba mbeu yamera nedikita/ziya. mira timboona vukove kove bwangu Save anenge ari right zimbabwe ihuru iyi haidi makaro. tange totobuda

Chidondova - 10 April 2014

Why extend whatever branch to self confessed rebels. In Zanu PF as soon as they win anything they dig in and tell you Mugabe goes nowhere until 2018 or congress or whenever. Now Mangoma feels there should be leadership renewal and he thinks that's democratic? My foot. He is an idiot from Zanu PF and all rebels must be chased from MDC. "Can two walk together if they are not agreed?" Wise up, MDC, don't tolerate rebellious people. They will only reduce your effectiveness and cost you heavily in the end. Hezvino ndiri pano.

mau mau - 10 April 2014

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Pamberi na Morgan narini narini til zanupf is dead and buried!

isaaam - 10 April 2014

y should a leader fear oposition that much let the outspoken speak that the only way a party can move forward, you wanted democratic change heyo yaramba mumba menyu

pee - 11 April 2014

Since when has indiscipline been called democracy?What leadership renewal when pple are in the midst of the struggle?We can never be fooled by hypocrites. We can never be swayed by sell outs.They may go hang.Tsvangirai move on.

Rudo - 11 April 2014

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