CIO plans to arrest MDC MPs en route to parliament

The Central Intelligence Organization (CIO) has been instructed to arrest newly elected MDC Members of Parliament on their way to parliament to prevent the MPs from being sworn and the MDC from winning the powerful speaker position.

State agents in Masvingo, Midlands and Manicaland are watching the newly elected parliamentarians round the clock to prevent them from leaving their constituencies bound for the capital.

Three Members of parliament-elects in Manicaland and three in Masvingo have gone into hiding: Heya Shoko of Bikita West, Edmore Marima of Bikita East and Maradza Tachiona of Masvingo West. In the Zanu (PF) stronghold of Mashonaland Central province the CIO want to abduct Shepherd Mushonga of Mazowe Central and Bindura South’s Bedneck Nyaude.

The election of a house speaker is likely to be the first order of business for parliament and the three main political parties Zanu (PF) and both formations of the MDC are fielding candidates for the position. The results of that vote by the 210 members of the house of assembly could set the tone for a parliament in which the combined MDC commands a majority.

The MDC faction led by Arthur Mutambara has confirmed that it will put forward Paul Themba Nyathi who in 2005 and in March this year lost parliament re-election bids as its own candidate for speaker.

Unconfirmed reports say the mainstream MDC led by Morgan Tsvangirai will nominate its national chairman, Lovemore Moyo, MDC-Matobo South, other names being floated around are former Zanu (PF) politburo member Dumiso Dabengwa, Welshman Mabhena, Pauline Mpariwa, MDC-Mufakose, and its National integration Secretary, Gordon Chavunduka.

Fears of factionalism in Zanu (PF) between the Mnangagwa faction and Mujuru faction could open the door for a deal between Mutambara’s MDC and Zanu (PF), in which Zanu (PF) might seek to secure the post of deputy speaker – and court the MDC faction as a coalition partner by backing Nyathi.

It is still not clear if Mugabe will also appoint a cabinet, but legal experts say once a parliament is convened current Ministers must step down.

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