Many Zimbabweans, myself included, believe the MDC-T is the answer to the political crisis in Zimbabwe. Some, however, are beginning to lose hope because of the seemingly infighting that is taking place within the leadership. However, I would like to believe that the fighting MDC-T leadership will soon pass the storming phase and reach the productive stage and start working together to present a united front, work together with other players in the MDC Alliance, and wrestle power from Zanu PF.
The MDC-T situation needs sober minds to digest what has happened to come up with a real solution, without looking at who is more popular among the three MDC-T vice-presidents. I see even sections of the media seem to have endorsed Chamisa’s illegitimate Presidency of the MDC-T, so has the MDC Alliance.
The facts on the ground are that while Dr. Khupe has acted as President of the MDC-T while the late Dr. Tsvangirai had been unavailable, when the late Dr. Tsvangirai left for what was to be his last trip to South Africa, he appointed Engineer Elias Mudzuri to be Acting President of the party until his return. Surprisingly, while Engineer Mudzuri was still acting, Luke Tamborinyoka announced that the now late Dr. Tsvangirai had appointed Advocate Chamisa to replace Engineer Mudzuri as Acting President, an appointment which, if it had been really made, was later reversed by Dr. Tsvangirai, probably realising that he had erred. But young Chamisa could not take any of that and went to the media to claim that the letterhead used was fake and Dr. Tsvangirai’s signature had been forged, a position which was proved wrong by photographic footage showing Dr. Tsvangirai proofreading the same letter.
Advocate Chamisa should then have accepted the latest development and paved way for Engineer Mudzuri to continue to act as President, but he went on to call for a kangaroo Council meeting, a meeting that he called before the passing on of Dr. Tsvangirai. The question that stands is what right did Advocate Chamisa have to call a council meeting without consulting Acting President Mudzuri? Would that be called a constitutionally constituted council meeting? That meeting, despite that, according to Dr. Khupe, the two had had a discussion in which Dr. Khupe advised Advocate Chamisa to call off the meeting, the meeting not only went ahead, but it also elected him as Acting President for the MDC-T for a period of 12 months. In my opinion, this was not a properly constituted meeting, hence the appointment of Advocate Chamisa as Acting President was unconstitutional, hence the unconstitutionally elected Acting President could not continue to call for Council meetings. But he went on to call for another Council meeting, which I don’t think he was entitled to since he was not supposed to be the Acting President. If some members of the MDC-T Council wanted to have a Council Meeting held, they could have requested the last Acting President, Engineer Mudzuri, to call for a council meeting, at which they could have moved a motion to elect an Acting President, and with their numbers, elected Advocate Chamisa as Acting President, or even substantial President as they finally did.
I have nothing against Advocate Chamisa taking over as Party. I also think that he is the most popular party official at the moment, and would be the best candidate against Mnangagwa this time round, given several factors, including that he was the late Dr. Tsvangirai’s favourite to take over as president, as well as the fact that 60 percent of registered voters are under the age of 40 – a factor expected to work in his favour. But in my opinion what is happening sets a very wrong precedence for what is supposed to be a democratic party, which is supposed to follow its constitution, and in my opinion, not every party official can call and address a council meeting, but if an individual who is not the one who is supposed to call a council meeting feels there are issues for which a council meeting is essential, they should approach the person who has authority to call for a council meeting to do so.
I would encourage the MDC-T Council to seriously consider my views. They are free to respond if they wish if they think I am wrong – perhaps there are processes that I am not very familiar with regarding the calling of council meetings, especially with reference to the meetings that have been called by Advocate Chamisa since the death of the party’s founding President, Dr. Tsvangirai.
What the MDC-T Council members should also know is that in the Presidential elections, they are not the only ones who vote. We certainly do not expect a number of votes that is equal to the number of council officials that make up the MDC-T Council, but we need millions of votes, and some of those will elude us because there are hundreds of current party members out there who are not happy with what is happening.
Even Zanu PF called a special congress to elect a President even though it was obvious there was only one candidate Emmerson Mnangagwa.
For the MDC-T Council, my view is that the three vice-presidents should meet on their own to try and discuss issues as vice-presidents, while someone in council should approach either Engineer Mudzuri of Dr. Khupe to call a council meeting that may elect Chamisa as Acting President. I say either Engineer Mudzuri because he was the last Acting President, but I also suggest Dr. Khupe because of what I believe to be an authentic recording of the Dr. Tsvangirai I read about saying Dr. Khupe was the one to act as President in his absence as she was the elected Deputy President at Congress.
Having said this, I want to believe that the MDC-T leaders who are mourning our departed leader could be highly emotional and have allowed their emotions to take over, but I encourage them to sober up and look at the bigger picture, agree to genuine dialogue. An important aspect of the storming phase of an organisation is that those involved be be allowed to speak out their concerns, which, if addresses properly, will lead to productiveness, and better results for the organisation and all those whose interests it should serve. Therefore, let Zanu PF not be fooled to celebrate what is happening in the MDC-T, because I am aware they have bigger issues of their own to resolve before the 2018 harmonised elections.
I believe that the MDC-T will come stronger if Council takes a step back, acknowledge where they have gone wrong and address those issues in order to set the right precedence befitting a democratic movement, and I do hope that those served with this letter will take my concerns to council following the appropriate procedures.
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