MDC-T leader Thokozani Khupe’s loyalists have claimed their leader should be allowed to continue at the helm of the party ahead of Morgen Komichi and Douglas Mwonzora, who they accuse of ditching the party only to come back after falling out of favour with the MDC Alliance leadership.
The calls have exposed deep-rooted divisions in the party ahead of the extraordinary congress set for December with Khupe, Mwonzora, Komichi and Elias Mudzuri reportedly gunning for the party presidency.
The MDC-T is due to hold its congress to elect a new leader in December using the 2014 structures as ordered by the Supreme Court. Mwonzora, last week, however, said all members recalled from the party and Parliament would not be allowed to contest.
Mwonzora was MDC Alliance deputy secretary for international relations before he crossed the floor to Khupe’s MDC-T after the Supreme Court ruling.
Yesterday, Khupe loyalists circulated messages saying Mwonzora and Komichi, who also joined Khupe after the 2018 split when they lost in their bid to get positions at the party’s Gweru congress, should not be allowed to contest for positions at the congress.
Komichi lost to Tendai Biti and Lynnette Karenyi-Kore for the post of MDC Alliance vice-president, while Mwonzora lost to Chalton Hwende for the post of secretary-general before the two hatched a plan to join the MDC-T following the March Supreme Court ruling.
“Good afternoon leaders, I am not speaking about congress but about what was on the ground. President Khupe was the vice-president, Mwonzora, Komichi and Mudzuri fled with Chamisa and endorsed something which was not correct,” part of the audio allegedly of a member of the party said, while addressing a leadership group debate, said.
“Who then remained resolute, those who went with Chamisa or the one who stood with the truth?”
“If they wanted to contest, why didn’t they do that at that particular time, why did they follow Chamisa?
“Mwonzora is a lawyer and chose not to follow the constitution and endorsed wrong things. Khupe stood with the constitution and that is my point.”
The party is set to hold its national standing committee meeting today with Komichi saying the outcome of the meeting would be made public later in the day.
Asked why he should be allowed to contest at the congress when he once abandoned the MDC-T for Chamisa’s MDC Alliance, Komichi said that was water under the bridge and the party should be allowed to forge ahead.
“Those who are barred, it is not the end, we will reunite later. We had Tendai Biti parting ways with Morgan Tsvangirai but they were working together again by the time he died,” Komichi said.
As the MDC wars rage on, a group of youths led by Paul Gorekore has demanded a return to the 2014 structures and dialogue by leadership to unite the party.
The group has been camped at Harvest House (Morgan Richard Tsvangirai House) demanding an audience with the leadership that was elected and appointed in 2014 only. – NewsDay.