Pro or anti-Senate – confusion reigns

The new leader of the pro-Senate group, Arthur Mutambara, in his acceptance speech at the recent Congress, made a lot of sense. But he also created more confusion by what he did not say.

n 0in 0pt”>We welcome anybody who wants to unite Zimbabweans against the tyrannical rule of Zanu (PF) and he has spoken about mobilising people to resist oppression. That is all well and good.

What we find confusing is why he chose to lead the pro-Senate faction when he says his own feelings are that MDC should not only boycott the Senate, but should also boycott all other election-based activities.

On this score he is in total agreement with Morgan Tsvangirai’s consistent position. The Senate issue is what precipitated the split. So, if that is no longer an issue, what is? Is Mutambara out of step with his new colleagues – some of whom sit in the Senate? Or has he persuaded them round to his way of thinking?

We would encourage them to clarify the situation as soon as possible.

We applaud Mutambara’s call for the democratic forces in our beloved Zimbabwe to talk to each other and work together. For his part, Tsvangirai has responded speedily and positively to these calls, calling Mutambara “an enthusiastic and patriotic Zimbabwean who wants to see the termination of dictatorship in Zimbabwe“.

So can we expect a speedy reconciliation? We certainly hope so.

Sadly, Mutambara’s election as head of the pro-Senate faction will probably cement division in the party rather than unite it, and the holding of separate Congresses by the divided MDC has become a major obstacle to unity.

The messy legal wrangle for use of the party’s name, symbols and assets continues, an unfortunate waste of time, money and energy. The attendant publicity, duly twisted by the state media for maximum propaganda effect, will undoubtedly have far-reaching negative implications among the rank of file of opposition supporters.

The old adage “United we stand, divided we fall” has stood true for centuries. One thing is for certain, a divided and bickering opposition stands little chance of dislodging Zanu (PF) from power.

Such dissipation of energy at this crucial time in our history is nothing short of a crying shame. We beg all those concerned to come to their senses and do whatever it takes to focus on the real enemy, resolutely choosing to relegate these side issues to the sidelines, where they belong.

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