HomeLocal NewsFireworks at MDC-T meeting

Fireworks at MDC-T meeting

FIREWORKS are expected at the MDC-T’s national executive meeting today as calls for leadership renewal intensify after the party’s deputy treasurer Elton Mangoma joined the chorus for an early congress.

Elias Mambo

As fissures continue to widen, Mangoma last week joined other top party leaders like party national treasurer Roy Bennett and standing committee members Ian Kay, Eddie Cross and Elias Mudzuri, who have called on party leader Morgan Tsvangirai to step down after losing three consecutive elections to President Robert Mugabe.

Mangoma, a former Minister of Energy in the inclusive government, wrote a four-page letter urging Tsvangirai to resign and allow fresh blood ahead of the 2018 elections.

Mangoma’s letter torched a storm with some party officials declaring their allegiance to Tsvangirai while others believe a new leader is needed to break the jinx of perennially playing opposition politics.

One senior official, who refused to be named for fear of victimisation, said if he could counsel Tsvangirai he would tell him to step aside.

“If I were to advise him I would tell him to step aside and allow for a new team to be chosen that embraces other progressive forces from trade unions, churches, civic societies, students and business, so that we do not become a perpetual opposition party,” the official said.

Another official said whilst the majority of people may want Tsvangirai to resign, they are not in a position to tell him because they fear purges and victimisation.

“Some of us support Mangoma’s motion but already there are threats to our lives by the camp that wants Tsvangirai to remain at the helm of the party,” said the party member.

“It is that fear which causes people to remain quiet because already we have reports that some members were attacked by the youths at Harvest House.”

Battle lines are already drawn as some senior MDC-T officials have declared that if the issue is brought up at the meeting they would stand by their leader. Charlton Hwende, a national executive member in charge of Mashonaland West province and a Tsvangirai loyalist, urged Mangoma to resign if he is not happy with Tsvangirai’s leadership.

“Political parties are voluntary associations of individuals who share a common vision, ideology and beliefs so since it is now clear that our colleague, Mangona’s views about how we should reach the new Zimbabwe are now at variance with what the ordinary MDC members and all our constitutional structures, he must do the honourable thing and disengage or disembark from the freedom train that is being driven by Tsvangirai,” Hwende said.

MDC-T’s former deputy justice minister Obert Gutu also said there is need to adhere to the constitution when handling party issues.
“Some of us are slaves of constitutionalism and as such we cannot be party to the treacherous and Machiavellian calls for the unconstitutional removal of our leader,” he said.

“Anyone who wants to call for the removal of the party leader or any other leader for that matter should strictly adhere to the dictates and provisions of the MDC-T constitution. Thus we will not listen to a treacherous and mischievous message that is being delivered by a Judas Iscariot masquerading as a democrat. That we will never accept.”

MDC-T spokesperson Douglas Mwonzora said Mangoma’s issue should not be blown out of proportion because the party decides by majority vote.
“This issue was rejected by the standing committee and it is water under the bridge,” Mwonzora said.

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  1. “A Judas Iscariot, masquerading as a democrat” is this just campaign language or does Gutu actually believe Mangoma is a Judas? If this were so, when did he find out about this? Does Gutu believe the MDC would be better off without those calling for leadership renewal and if yes, when in his opinion should issues pertaining to leadership renewal be debated? Should everyone just shut up in their strait jackets and pretend everything is Ok till 2016? Is losing election since 2000 not a crisis that calls for introspection? Finally, what is in it for him Gutu, this calling Mangoma names or is he the only one allowed to profess an opinion and nobody else because from where I stand he is doing exactly what Mangoma is being accused of..I mean looking power straight in the face and expressing an opinion? By the way, this should not be read as support for Mangoma, far from it. Rather it is in support of allowing democratic discourse to run its course without unnecessary rancour. The party is called MDC with democratic change being its operative selling point..why would senior officers be at each other’s throats for exercing the same democratic change they have sold to all of us?

    • I can briefly answer your questions by asking if those asking for Tsvangirayi to step aside will also do the same because they lost the election as well? Some of them have been MPs since the formation of the party but lost out last year but they still want to campaign for 2018, is that not hypocrisy? The best was for Mangoma & like minded to say we have lost so we are stepping aside so that new blood can come into the NEC with new ideas. Then from down below they could ask for leadership renewal then I would have respected him. Look at Eric Matinenga for example, he has dropped out and these are the people who should be asking for others to follow suit.

  2. Gutu himself wS the first to tell the whole world that MT has poor leadership qualities. He advised us that he practiced nepotism and listens only to friends and relatives. When was his own Damascus moment?

    IF he could tell Americans this, what makes him thinks that Mangoma is the wrong one? Is is his belief that Mangoma should have also gone to the Americans?

    He is crazy and uneducated.

    • Speaking as a South African (with little knowledge of Zim political dynamics), I truly believe Morgan is a liability to MDC in much the same way as Zuma is to the ANC. In SA and ANC circles we know the reason Mbeki was so dismissive of Morgan is that the guy did not have his own views except to say Mugabe is bad. He was, and still is, a puppet of the colonialists and imperialists. No wonder everytime Mugabe does something, Morgan cries out loud to the international community for help, because they promised him everything.

      If MDC had a credible strong leader, Mugabe would have been history by now.

  3. I donot understand this hullabaloo.Indeed a leadership renewal is urgently required in the MDC, but debate must centre around the whole leadership rather than on Tsvangirai.For example Mangoma would also need to perform a self reflection, as a former Minister who paid for oil which was not delivered ( this saw him being arrested), is he the right leader for MDC leadership or has he also failed? We have heard a lot of people saying a lot about Tsvangirai’s leadership, but that has mostly comprised of blame, blame and no alternative strategies or solutions.I challenge all those with better ideas on driving this democratic train forward to present them for public scrutiny and debate,so elitism can be separated from intellectual arguments.

    • If i am not mistaken the case went to court and he was found not guilty. Please allow the talk on leadership renewal in your party maybe by that you will be different from ZPF otherwise there no difference

  4. Tsvangirai is not a standard measure for democracy or goodness,those who are beholden to him are the real enemies of democracy and the people’s project.People should be beholden to principles.

  5. Most of us do not know this guy called Mangoma at least you have Morgan to thank bururu now you are known . The best political party which Mugabe failed to destroy is mdc under the leader of Morgan . Mangoma you have made enough money ask for a farm from yo party zanu, and venture into farming . Morgan is here to stay Mangoma bye ,bye you dug yourself a political grave.That is why Mudzuri was becoming big headed so you were planning your evil ways together. rubbish is starting to peel off thank god.

    • And Tsvangirai will stay in power so that he will make other pple to get noticed so thats why MDC was formed because winning an election Tsvangirai will not remember he failed to become an MP that year he contested in Buhera

  6. We only know Tsvangirayi from as far back as 1980s. The only man who forced democracy and a true oppostiion to the leardership of Mr Mugabe. The rest are idealistic opportunists who have rode behind Tsvangirayi’s name to fend for their families. Even if Mangoma goes to Mutoko or joins Zanu there wont be any political difference in Zim. Key people to democracy are Tsvangison, Biti, Tapiwa and this other smart boy.

  7. what does the MDC constitution say about this If they can only adhere to their constitution we wl then know what type of leadership are we dealing wth here

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