Tsvangirai accused of dragging feet on violence

reuben_matenguBULAWAYO An MDC councillor, Reuben Matengu (Pictured), has been questioned by the police about the stoning on April 22 of a BMW vehicle belonging to MDC-T member, Dixon Mohammed.

I told them (police) that I know nothing about the stoning of Mohammeds car. If Mohammed really mentioned my name then he is trying to frame me, said Matengu. Matengu and Mohammed are respectively supporters of Bulawayo businessman, Alderman Matson Hlalo, and Minister of State Enterprises, Gordon Moyo. After two months of violent intra-party clashes, the Hlalo faction won total control of the Bulawayo Provincial youth and women provincial committees.


Challenge Dube grimaces in pain after being stabbed in the hand, allegedly by Thokozani Khupes driver, Witness Dube.

Frederick Dzirutwe and Ali Phiri, both Hlalo supporters, spent a night in the cells in connection with the incident. Efforts to get a comment from MDC-T Bulawayo Provincial Spokesperson, Mandla Sibanda were fruitless because his phone went unanswered. In the run up to Congress, party leader, Morgan Tsvangirai told members in Bulawayo, It is your duty to shun, reject and discard those that promoted violence. This party has no place for violence. We took a decision as an executive to expel those who were involved in violent activities.

But insiders say Tsvangirai is dragging his feet on the issue of disciplining MDC-T Vice Organising Secretary, Abednigo Bhebhe. Sources say that despite written reports, still pictures and video evidence, the party is failing to discipline violent members. This inaction mixed with the controversial endorsement of Gordon Moyo as MDC-T Chairman for Bulawayo Province and the failure to curb tribalism has led many members to believe that Tsvangirai is ill-disposed towards Alderman Hlalo and his comrades.


Nkulumane District Chair, Flora Mtigi, points to her broken window pane.

In an interview, a woman from Makokoba, who chose to remain anonymous said, The party must first discipline Abednigo Bhebhe. He is a violent man. He threw stones at youths the age of his children. On April 3, Ruth Mbedzi of Makokoba was hospitalized after being struck by iron bars and logs allegedly by supporters of MDC-T Vice President, Thokozani Khupe and Gordon Moyo.

On April 11, the window of a house belonging to Nkulumane District Chairman, Flora Mtigi was stoned by unknown assailants. Mtigi and Mbedzi are both members of Alderman Hlalos faction. Several youths loyal to Hlalo, including Jones Nyamafeni, Sinikiwe Nyathi, Challenge Dube, Clint Chigumbu and Shelton Tembo, were hospitalised after being assaulted by members of a rival faction.

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