Tsvangirai speaks out

HARARE - Under-pressure MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai has broken his silence on the attempted coup staged by rebels seeking to topple him from the party’s presidency — describing his opponents as “little men” who could never remove him through illegal means.

Addressing his supporters in his rural home of Buhera on Sunday,

Tsvangirai also described the rebellion as a “non-event”.

“Handidzingwi netsamba. Ndinodzingwa necongress (I cannot be suspended by letters but by the MDC congress),” Tsvangirai declared.

Some senior MDC officials, including secretary-general Tendai Biti claimed to have suspended Tsvangirai from the MDC presidency at the weekend, and announced that they had taken over the affairs of the embattled party.

The rebels said the suspensions on Tsvangirai and his top leadership were aimed at reviving the 15-year-old labour-backed movement, which they claimed had been dented by the MDC leader.

Saturday’s meeting, chaired by legislator Samuel Sipepa Nkomo, gave Sekai Holland the mandate to lead the party on an interim basis until a congress is convened. It also “lifted” the suspensions imposed on Elton Mangoma, Last Maengahama, Jacob Mafume and Promise
Mkhwananzi, who had fronted the initial rebellion against Tsvangirai.

Speaking at his Sunday meeting with his supporters, Tsvangirai said he had been betrayed by some of his closest lieutenants, singling out Toendepi Shonhe and siblings Solomon and Paul Madzore, who he said were close relatives who had turned against him.

“Kana ndatadza saTsvangirai taura kuti watadza pakati pakati, hatiendei mberi nezvakati zvakati, totauriranaka. Ko zvekuhwandirana zvinei? Tinoda kubvumirana, toenda kucongress woti ndinonzi Mangoma ndoda ku-challenger president. Vanhu voti zvakanaka, gwede gwede. Haikona kuita zvinhu zvechi-crook uchitaura nyaya yedemocracy. Ndiyo democracy yacho here yekuita mameetings muri vaviri?” Tsvangirai said.

(If I have done wrong as Tsvangirai, you should say this is where you erred. Let’s move forward like this, not to do this clandestinely. We must agree and then we go to congress.

Then you can say I am (Elton) Mangoma and I want to challenge Tsvangirai. Then people say can you square off. Not to raise flimsy democracy arguments. Is that democracy, convening a meeting with two people, holding meetings with a rented crowd?)”.

The MDC leader went on to describe the rebels as “ignoramuses”.

“Chinhu chinongonetsa ini ndofunga chibharanzi. Pane mwana wasekuru vangu vanonzi VaShonhe ndakamudaidza kuoffice. Sinyoro, tingadai tichitemba nemi asi you are the one on the front. I told him I am going to tell your mother that your child is selling out. Munhu ari kutengesa Tsvangirai vanhu vemuno muBuhera sevazukuru vangu vanaMadzore. What wrong have I done to you?” lamented Tsvangirai.

The former prime minister, who shared power with Mugabe in an uneasy coalition government formed at the behest of Sadc, traced the current turmoil rocking the MDC to Zanu PF.

“I want to tell you why this is happening. In 2005, when Welshman Ncube (leader of the smaller MDC formation), and (Thabo) Mbeki (former South African President) said the MDC cannot go to the negotiations this strong, it should be the junior partner. Now this has come back again. Zanu PF knows that they cannot move this country (forward) without the

MDC, so let us divide the MDC so that when we go to the negotiations it will be Biti, Welsh and Tsvangirai so that these other two will keep backing Zanu PF.

“If you want change, why are you moving from the majority? Isn’t it that you want change? Why forming a splinter (party)? It means you want Zanu PF to continue in power. Zvino hero dambudziko MDC hanzi kususpender Tsvangirai? Vanoshura vakomana vaya handichada kutaura nezvekuparty because arasika arasika,” said Tsvangirai, pouring scorn on efforts to remove him “illegally”.

In a clear sign that Tsvangirai is still keen on building bridges with all opposition parties, he reiterated his often-stated position to form a grand coalition, but was swift to add that “if a person wants to leave they are free to leave”.

Tsvangirai, who last month pre-maturely claimed that there was no crisis in the party “cockpit”, had no kind words for Biti, whom he alleged had no political base.

“What can Biti do?” Tsvangirai asked rhetorically. “A person who cannot organise five people ndotya munhu akadaro naMangoma? (Mangoma and Biti don’t worry me). We saw that with Welsh, the script is the same, (although) the actors are different. They will not go anywhere truly, with the way those people sold out, betraying the people of Zimbabwe.”

He said the formation of the mooted and so-called United Democratic Front by the rebels would be a monumental flop because the people at the forefront did not enjoy grassroots support.

“I told Mangoma when he handed me the letter that uchafuratira museve nekutemba mhepo. Akandishura murume uya,” (This will backfire, he surprised me), said Tsvangirai.

Comments (68)

I had great respects for Biti but what he did was so disrespectful to the povo. Why not call for an early congress then do the right thing? You are not a man. You belong to the western and northern African countries where a coup is the only way up.

Dereck - 29 April 2014

Ha ha ha! Kufuratira Museve nekutemba mhepo! cracked me up! But jokes aside - you all need each other. In Kenya, the Rainbow coalition managed to retire long time politician and President, Daniel Arap Moi by forming a coalition. Divided you fall, its that simple.

taps - 29 April 2014

To Tsvangirai, take a cue from Uncle Bob. Hakuna zvekunzi muzukuru. Actually muzukuru anokutorera mukadzi wani. Mumwe muzukuru wa Uncle Bob akazisungwa wani achitengesa information.

Dereck - 29 April 2014

i can see that tsvangirai is in deep pain and agony. so MDC was for tsvangirai nevazukuru vake anamadzore nanashone? this is exactly the reason why we now have the splinter group becoz the so called movement for democratic change was simply a fiefdom. wazvifumura wega Tsvangirai.

shut mind, open mouth - 29 April 2014

Well spoken my Black President. Selling out has no room in our party. Its a people's project, so if they want to form their Party MDC-B or United Democratic Party so be it, they are very free to do so. We will get there chematama usatya tinewe dzamara tasvika.

Larry - 29 April 2014

If anything I am one person who is very relieved, I didn't know what to expect from these so-called rebels but after what happened on Saturday, I can safely say there is no need to panic after all. and another thing I am learning in my rather fragile political career is to be a smart politician you do not necessarily need to be an academic but it is rather an in-thing. You are born with it or nothing. MT is proving in all this a very sly politician who was born a politician rather than a johny come latty. Not that I support every of his move but I think TB is lost and what he has just done will only lead him to one place- oblivion. People like Chimanikire, Sikhala etc attempted this but today where are they? I know Biti with all the pride and arrogance may not come back and instead choose to concerntrate on his law firm but I tend to think it will be another technocratic mind gone to waste. Why Biti could not wait remains a mystery to me, feeding to the belief building inside of me that he is "compromised". Tsvangirai's conspiracy and paranoia that he is being funded to destabilize his party is beginning to make a lot of sense inside of me regardless of how true that is. Biti could have waited.

Tonderai Gonzo - 29 April 2014

Vakomana murikuita zvekutamba Tvangirayi achtonga chete Education must be supported by povo.

Zimbabwean - 29 April 2014

well said Mr President regai vaende

masharks - 29 April 2014

well said Mr President regai vaende

masharks - 29 April 2014

well said Mr President regai vaende

masharks - 29 April 2014

well said Mr President regai vaende

masharks - 29 April 2014

well said Mr President regai vaende

masharks - 29 April 2014

well said Mr President regai vaende

masharks - 29 April 2014

well said Mr President regai vaende

masharks - 29 April 2014

well said Mr President regai vaende

masharks - 29 April 2014

Given the fact that Biti knows very well that he has no large following, Tsvangirai has just given me the answer I've been looking for as to why Biti made such a stupid move. The reason being that Mugabe is looking at another Unity government being formed soon and he needs two smaller parties to form that with as opposed to one stronger MDC. I am one of the many people that had a lot of respect for Biti but now I know he is one of those people responsible for our continued suffering for his own selfish ends.

Dr Know - 29 April 2014

Biti anondirwadzwa mhani pakapera ma elections akabuda achipupa furu kuti zanu yabirira kuita kutakura vanhu nemabhazi kuzo vhota mu constituency make then ava kubuda pa Dead B C achiti zanu yakahwina coz yakagona ku campaigner,akaratidza husasikamu hwake hwese hapana angada kuti munhu akazungaira kudai aite president we party,unodzingirei Tsvangirai muparty inonzi MDC T iwe form yako uyu womusiya ne party yake,Tsvangirayi for life

NIC - 29 April 2014

The problem here is not Biti but rather a problem of Tsvangirai clinching to power and honestly speaking its the same as ZANU PF. You have served 14 years as a leader its time for you to pass the button stick to someone else not to be power hungry. Tsvangirai really must start to practise democracy. He clearly showed that he is an autocratic leader who does not view other peoples opinions. Its high time you step down peacefully or you will be removed violently the same way you ought to remove President Mugabe.

Tonderai - 29 April 2014

Dear Tonderai. MDC has had a number of congress. There is still one scheduled for 2016. There are provisions within the MDC-T Constitution for an early congress if need be. So this issue about Autocratic this and that is the same as the song about sanctions that the other party sings about

Dereck - 29 April 2014

Tonderai Tsvangirayi is not clinging to power. If he is eligible to contest the presidency of MDC again the problem lies with the Bitis and others who formed MDC and formulated its constitution, period. If you want to run for an election and you are eligible it is your right so you can win or lose but these nonentities know they don't have that national support they want to take short cuts. Is it not we were being told they are trying to have an early congress now they have disturbed it and actually messed it. We now need a new political party without these people in both parties they have played their party and they have celebrated too early. Let us all men and women of integrity come together and form a new political party with a new dispensation, a leader comes and go and should be embedded in that constitution not to first look at your position and say for now I am ok only to turn tomorrow and say I am no longer ok. Shame on these people from both camps they have messed people and have forgotten the people who died for this movement.

Maita Manyuka - 29 April 2014

I think with the knowledge Biti purported to have, it is clear that he is an Idiot-power hungry man.....more so at the expense of ordinary Zimbos. look back to 2008, he was not willing to go into government for us to suffer. Shame on you poor Biti.......unoda kuita mucheka dzafa, waivepi?

WEZHIRA - 29 April 2014

It's a tragedy to have the likes of Tsvangirai leading political parties. Besides all his shortcomings he still has the guts to call other people "little men"? Surely if ever there was a little man it's Tsvangirai. The chap thinks people are so stupid as to wait for the outcome of his manipulated congress? He really takes people for fools though he is one himself. If he had any shame remaining in him he should have resigned after the Lorcardia scandal. Morgan failed to inspire anyone during GNU wherein Mugabe outsmarted him on every score. The fellow still lives in the Stone Age by believing that since Shonhe and the Madzore brothers are his relatives they should support him politically. It is quite revealing that Morgan does not mention Mangoma's concerns but merely mentions the letter. Was he not able to read the letter and understand it? Perhaps. Tsvangirai is still dreaming of negotiations with the ZANU PF mafia. Clearly the man should go to Ingutsheni Mental hospital!

Ronnie Mongo - 29 April 2014

biti last time to be an MP .vanhu vanoda save chete thus all

kiki - 29 April 2014

i can see the selfishness of Biti and crew. They lack leadership characters. When MDC lost the elections they all blamed it on Morgan,were they not in the party?? What were they doing if they all came up to accuse Morgan for lack of leadership. They too have proved that they are not leaders at all,why couldnt they advice Morgan on what steps to do and take.

shona - 29 April 2014

i have a question . Tavingirayi anodiwa here nevanhu kana kuti Mugabe ndiye akavengwa nevanhu chete?

Think Tank - 29 April 2014

Kana muchiti Tsvangirai arikuramba kubva munenge muchitii nekuti congress iriko then Biti naMangoma voti Tsvangirai arikurambira pachigaro,Biti zvawaita izvi chiziva kuti wazvirumura uine zuva rimwe wazvarwa hapana chainoziva iwe who ever akakunyepera achiti watova muhombe akuurayisa tarira Welsh aifunga kuti ndebeles will suport him but tarira kuti wakaitwa sei my friend daidzira rally Harare EAST NHASI uone kuti panouya ani kana vanhu vakatouya vanenge vachiuya kuzokurova zvimagirazi futi uriwe muno muzimbabwe here iwe unenge usiri i will find out unoutsinye kuda kuurayisa mhuri yeZimbabwe nenzara iwe uchipihwa mari naanaBennet

Mafirakureva - 29 April 2014

What have just happened is an opener to Morgan. Its time now you remove and stop considering those family ties in setting up effective leadership structures. These are the very people that will bring you down in Government because you cant give up your muzukuru to languish in prison,i think as a nation we have got enough lessons from that. Now look for people who have the party at heart and are qualified to do the work,not vazukuru vekwa Jeromiyo. Never be intimidated by people who think they are 'educated'. What i can tell you is that Zimbabweans we are not that intelligent enough to choose an educated leader,they are not what we need at the moment,after all, the educated ones are the ones who have failed us. Biti doesnt learn from Gwisai, Ncube, Chimanikire, Sakhala,etc. They think being in office is because vanhu vanovada which is wrong,we loved the party before we loved them so they can as well go. Morgan has build the name MDC and now they all want to hijack the struggle at this stage,its too late. Now i would advice Morgan to form a strong coalition with other opposition parties- Mavambo, MDC-N, etc. this is n longer a time of personal ambitions. form a united front, fight ZANU from a united front then you will win. Its now the time Morgan should be mobilising people through rallies. Take advantage of the failed economy,bank on it. Personally i would advice that you hold a Mother of Rallies on the 31st of July to reflect on the failures the government has done since the 31st elections last year. Its exactly a year but still things have gone worse than we have been expecting.

shona - 29 April 2014

Nhai Inga Save wakanyorerwa tsamba naMangoma wani kuti matatdza chimbosudurukai wakabva vamudzinga nekumunyomba. ko ipa pavave kuti kana ndatadza ndiudzei warikuda kuudzwa nenzira ipi. Save makakanya bvumai. Biti regai aiite maRights ake ari muMDC.

See Me Nomore - 29 April 2014

Again i was thinking to myself. People we need to be jagged up.Never rejoice over the recent announcement by ZEC of whatever reforms they have brought to the electoral system,as long as they want to remain in power,they have already worked their ways of rigging you before the elections come. What they want to do is to allow a diaspora vote but still rig it so that you will have no ground for rigging allegations. . . . . . . .sit down,look into it. If it were possible,this the time the opposition parties and civic groups should be planning on how to bring the electronic voter's roll on the table. Start working on it now not to wait for the last minute. Go and challenge every loophole of it in the courts,that what they will use. work on having a thorough electoral audit, otherwise you will be caught pants down again.

shona - 29 April 2014

In 1960, R. Mugabe joined the NDP as it's public secretary, thereby kick-starting his political career. He fought for freedom from minority rule for 20 YEARS b4 winning and becoming PM of an Independent Zimbabwe in 1980. N. Mandela in 1944 joined the ANC and worked to form a youth league for the party which was fighting against apartheid. In 1994, exactly 50 YEARS later, he won, he became South Africa's first black president. Saka Tsvangirai haasati atanga uye haasati akunda zvaarikurwisana nazvo, anobvirei nhai?

Commentetor - 29 April 2014

Truth of the matter is African politics is based on intolerance of dissent. From homes to churches, workplaces to sport, you name the place, dissent is being suppressed violently. Its an unfortunate culture and even the nature of some comments here, its all violence. Whether Tendai (Bizozo) is right or wrong is neither here nor there, the issue here is whitherto Zimboz? Zimbabwean politics is doomed for sure, if the advocates for for democracy are not in agreement as to what really constitutes a true democracy, then patobikwa mbodza and sadly ZPF will continue to hang the unfortunate victim called democracy.

Proud Zimbabwean - 29 April 2014

Mugabe 34years in power tsvangirai 15 years in power same same

Harare - 29 April 2014

mugabe wants to make sure mdc is dead before he appoints his successor. he is only affraid of tsvangirai kuti kana akange aine musangano wakagadzikana zanu pf inobva pa power come 2018. vana biti ava ndovano shanda basa rese iri. remember ndiye biti atakaona akabata manifesto ye zanu pf yaidaidzwa nekuti bhora mugedhi varipamusangano. .biti mutengesi akatoipa kudarika mugabe. imagine hundreds of pople wher killed vachiteera mdc nhasi izvozvo kwairi idambe. ndakutsamwira biti.

chipazhamongo - 29 April 2014

Another split. Poor Tsvangison vanhu vari kumusupporter for the sake of the vacant posts available

Jethuro - 29 April 2014

The truth of the matter is that Bob was the 1st person to talk about the need for leadership renewal when he said, 'mungatongwa nevanhu vasina kudzidza?' Then the Roys, Kays, Mangomas falled suit. What I know from Biti's public willingness to form a party including some Zanu pf people, is that he has already wined and dined n gone to bed with the enemy. The 1st tell tale sign was Gono. Wait till the chickens come home to roost, we are yet to see more manifestations of deals that have been going on between Biti and Zanu Pf ministers and mps. Mark my words, Biti has been the biggest sellout after Welshman. Talking of Welshman, the majority of these lawyer rebels are in his confidence and inner circle. He may absolve himself but his hand, that of Bob and Mbeki cannot be clean in all this drama. Morgan, your security department must transform and train...........

Ntamo - 29 April 2014

Tsvangirai anodiwa nevanhu wakomama 90% yewannhu, 10% BOB asi Chitsotsi ikozvinho munhu vese achada chinzvimbo cha SG UYE national executive member they must tell us how are they going to identify/Kubata /kuona chichitsitsi che ZANU PF kana musingachione IAM COMMING THERE BEFORE CONGRESS IN OCTO TELL ME THE ANSWERS THEN I WILL VOTE FOR YOU @CONGRESS

dofo - 29 April 2014

Pane ambocommenter akati malawyer haana kuita maths, kana dzeform four, ndikaona kuti isure, pane mumwe aiita shona nehistory akanzi nemumwe mufana aiita mpc asi unoda kuita n'anga kana wapedza, mukomana uya akazongoita law iyoyo

hokoyo - 29 April 2014

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Sounds rather childish. Welshman and Mbeki didn't want the MDC to go to the talks strong. This guy mwana mudiki chaiye. And then he blames Zanu Pf while Mwonzora blames Welshman Ncube. What is this a circus? Yesterday you were refusing an early congress saying the constitutionally schedule one is in 2016 and today you announce that you are getting rid of the challengers and all of a sudden an early congress in October is ok? Seriously? And now you want to cling on using Bobs tired excuse that I "I will only go when the people say go".

Peter Hameno - 30 April 2014

Editor. Unodzingwa neCongress under normal circumstances prescribed in the MDC Constitution but should you mutilate the democratic provisions of the party, unodzingwa netsamba.

Mweni Tafara - 30 April 2014

Now you know why Biti and Mangoma availed very little money for the MDC-T 2013 campaign, whilst Zanu pf splashed $100 million. Musatambe vakomana munosabhotejwa. Next muchaona Chamisa otanga zvakewo murai muone. Morgan beware of your right hand men.

machakachaka - 30 April 2014

some lessons in my life: never trust a person: politics is not about how educated one is: good leaders are loved by the people: never rush, time will come: money can bribe even the hard minds: mugabe is cunning. never lose hope tsvangirai. we are with you till a new zimbabwe is born.

dexter madhodha - 30 April 2014

i used to think Biti was a bit normal but eish imboko

lazarus - 30 April 2014

vana Beat. respect and dignity ol gone

jb - 30 April 2014

l refuse to be hoodwinked by failures like Swangirayi. he manipulated the MDC constitution and refused to step down when he was due to step down! God has seen that Swangirayi is a worse off dictactor and has not made it possible for him to rule us. by now we would have seen the worst. thank you Lord there are people like Biti and Nkomo who have seen the light before its late! Swangirayi will never rule this country. he was an alternative to Mugabe because there was not any. he is daft and dangerous and should leave us alone. we want people who can deliver!! go home and tend cattle that where you belong Mr Casanova!!

Open Minded - 30 April 2014

VaTsvangirai may not be a good leader but I think Biti is worse. Mabasa emari akaoma (the ways of money are evil)

Gondobwe - 30 April 2014

Tsvangirai has had a go three times & each time he was outwited, either by hook or by crook, still he lost. Now isn't it time to try somebody else with different ideas. the mission for MDC was to dislodge ZANU pf from power but not necessarily to make one Morgan Tsvangirai president. It will be a mistake to replace one dictator with another, lets not be emotional here. The orignal MDC constitution allowed for only 2 terms for a leader wheather one gains power or not. This constitution was changed quitely without going through congress just so that one Tsvangirai can stay in power. lets not be blind followers as if we are supporting sporting teams, this is something that affects every Zimbo's life & as such care should be taken without responding to useless slogans. look at Zambia, they have had different parties & leaders successfully challenge and attain power rather than stick to individuals. For a country that claims to be educated why is there just Mugabe & Tsvangirai dual??? Asi chii nhai?? Why not Mujuru, Biti, Masiiwa,Makoni, Gono,Ncube, Mawere or any of you contributors? why Just Bob & Tsvangson? Why??

Ed Mrehwa - 30 April 2014

The spilt was over due,lets see what you are going to do.I know these guys are going to be clueless very soon. Remember the 2005 split,orhers came back and say sorry to Tsvangirayi and were given the room to contest their seats but this time there is no such privileges.Those gone out are forever out. Move the train forward Mr Save.

Chemical Solution - 30 April 2014

The spilt was over due,lets see what you are going to do.I know these guys are going to be clueless very soon. Remember the 2005 split,orhers came back and say sorry to Tsvangirayi and were given the room to contest their seats but this time there is no such privileges.Those gone out are forever out. Move the train forward Mr Save.

Chemical Solution - 30 April 2014

no matter what man plans, God's will always prevail

geoffrey runganga - 30 April 2014

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