'MDC constitution review meant to enhance clarity'

HARARE - Morgan Tsvangirai’s MDC said yesterday it was currently gathering the views of its grassroots members in the provinces ahead of a review of the party constitution at the forthcoming MDC congress.

The party clarified the process amid press reports that Tsvangirai, who has survived  two challenges from his secretary generals — Welshman Ncube in 2005 and Tendai Biti this year — wanted to amend the MDC constitution to ensure that all administrative powers were centred around him just as President Robert Mugabe has done in Zanu PF.

“The process has nothing to do with entrenching anyone’s position but strengthening the party as an institution,” Luke Tamborinyoka, the MDC presidential spokesperson said.

“For the avoidance of doubt, the MDC is a democratic party and the review exercise is only meant to remove vagueness, enhance clarity and to input any other objective voice of the people informed by our collective experience as a party that has been in existence for 15 years.”

Tamborinyoka said Zimbabwe has had a bad experience of autocracy, dictatorship and the abuse of constitutions.

“The MDC and president Morgan Tsvangirai pledge to the people of this country that the exercise will be a truly objective process; a process that will not be abused to constitutionally anoint a tin-pot dictator in the MDC leadership, as has been wrongly peddled by others,” he said.

“We say no to the creation of dictators through clauses, verses and chapters of our constitutional  review. We are certain that the fears of the doomsayers are grossly misplaced.

“In any case, the constitutional review exercise is not meant to enhance the powers of any person as all congress offices are being treated as faceless vacancies as no one at this stage, including president Tsvangirai, has been nominated by any province.”

Tamborinyoka said as the current leader of the MDC,  Tsvangirai will not allow the process to degenerate into the creation of all-powerful individuals, especially in the presidency.

“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,” he said.

In his address to Matabeleland South province recently, Tsvangirai repeated the adage that “Constitutions are not made for the angels we know, but for the devils we don’t know.”

“We pledge to safeguard the democratic credentials of the MDC and to ensure that every office bearer, including and especially the party presidency, or any other office for that matter, is vaccinated from the whims of individuals,” Tamborinyoka said.

“President Tsvangirai has spent half his life fighting all-powerful individuals and he certainly will not be a cheerleader to the creation of dictators.

“In any case, the next MDC congress is not necessarily about elections and positions. The MDC congress will not only be busy with issues of constitutional review but will also deal with the review of the party’s policy programme.”

The congress delegates will deliberate and adopt party programmes as well as a clear roadmap to the next election, scheduled for 2018.

Tamborinyoka said there had to be clear signposts on what the party would do ahead of the next election. He said the MDC would only contest that election on condition that reforms were implemented to vaccinate the poll against a contested electoral outcome.

“Instead, the constitutional review process is part of the MDC’s organisational transformation meant to grossly change and improve the way the organisation conducts its business through the various offices and departments,” he said.

“While elections at this congress will definitely be held to showcase our democratic credentials and to highlight the proper platform at which leaders are removed and installed in the party, we have no intention to create another dictator through any of our congress processes.

“Without pre-empting anything in the exercise, which is still on-going, the MDC has never believed in arrogating power to individuals but to party organs and processes with a view to improve on democracy and the attendant checks and balances necessary in a democratic party.”

Comments (5)

Talk about brood parasites, finaly the zanu cuckoo is hatching. "The process has nothing to do with entrenching anyone's position but strengthening the party as an institution.” Concentrating power on a single individual or office does not create strong institutions. Look at Zanu and Zimbabwe does it look like there are strong democratic institutions? Look at Libya & Iraq amongst others and see how these places formerly run by "strong men" implode once they are removed because the institutions are just not there. Dongo said Zanu is full of Mugabe's wives and hence why they are all happy to contest for the crumbs and leave him unchallenged since coup d'état on Ndabaningi Sithole.

Galore 123 - 15 August 2014


JOHN - 15 August 2014

Only an idiot can not see the clear difference between ZANU PF & MDC. Equally the same,only a fool cannot distinguish Tsvangirai from Mugabe. The ongoing constitution review in MDC T is most welcome. Tsvangirai is against dictatorship in MDC but still his blind detractors keep comparing him with the evil dictator. MT is the envy of many. He did well to fight off clandestine, undemocratic,machinations by BITI & his pathetic team of sellouts. Clearly,the jealous ZPF won't revive Zimbabwe economically...

DEADLY - 15 August 2014

Deadly, Thank you. Only fools for sho cant see the difference. Vasiye vakadaro, vachamama nezanu yavo iyoyo

changu - 15 August 2014

Morgan ane potential yekuita wo dictator. Kurambira pachigaro ndiwo mavambo ehudictator. Zvinotanga saizvozvi. Deno aive democratic angadai akatoronga succession plan yake kare kare. Costitution irikutambwa nayo kuitira kuti agare pachigaro zvachose. Hapana musiyano zvechokwadi. He is equally or even more that his opponent.

zvirozviyedzwa - 22 August 2014

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