HARARE – A section of MDC -Alliance heavyweights is reportedly fighting in Douglas Mzwonzora’s corner amid fresh attempts to expel the former secretary general from the party.
Mwonzora who was demoted to a less influential portfolio of deputy secretary for international relations following the party’s elective congress in June, is now being defended by some senior party members who are believed to be irked by party leader Nelson Chamisa’s mistakes and opposed to his leadership style.
This puts into sharp focus Chamisa’s hold on power as some of his close lieutenants are coalescing against him .
An insider said heavyweights that include Vice President Tendai Biti, Job Sikhala, Thabita Khumalo among others are fighting in Mwonzora’s corner. Mwonzora is senator for Nyanga South.
“A lot is going on in the party as some members are going against the push to oust Mwonzora. Senior party officials are irked by the way Chamisa is running the party. We can’t have cartels running the party,” he said.
The source said most people in the party are disgruntled.
“He (Mwonzora) is considered as the voice of reason in the MDC. As it is we have no freedom of expression now. There is too much dictatorship,” he said. Despite keeping people’s hopes alive, the party has not offered anything meaningful to challenge the ruling party Zanu PF, some members of the National Council said.
“Some people have been suggesting that the legitimacy issue should not be a primary issue anymore and focus instead should be on building structures in rural areas to establish a very strong party. However these suggestions are falling on deaf ears. There is also the issue of imposition of candidates in local councils,” the source added.
Mwonzora refused to comment on the matter referring all questions to party spokesperson Daniel Molokele. Molokele was not available for comment as his phone went unanswered.
Contacted for comment Sikhala said he had no time for those petty issues but was concentrating on fighting for the freedom innocent citizens who are being harassed in the streets.
“I have to be very honest with you I don’t have time for those petty issues but I am concentrating on the freedom of our people who are being harassed and beaten in the streets so I cannot concentrate on such issues,” he said.
Thabita Khumalo said she was in a meeting promising to come back to this reporter after.
Biti could also mot be reached for comment.
Some of the issues that have prompted a fresh push for Mwonzora’s ouster include travelling with Zanu-PF MPs to Sweden for re-engagement meetings. He recently travelled to Sweden with the Speaker of the National Assembly Jacob Mudenda, legislators Kindness Paradza and Joshua Sacco of Zanu-PF, and Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga for a re-engagement diplomatic mission.