MDC-A leader Nelson Chamisa is set to launch an operation targeting errant parliamentarians from his party for failing to engage the electorate or initiate projects in their constituencies.
The party’s legislators have been accused of neglecting their constituencies and this contributed to their massive loss in the last general election in 2018 and by elections that were held last year.
Close sources within the opposition party said Chamisa, who opened a hot line that will be distributed to supporters to report on their legislators’ conduct in the constituencies, had been given a wake up call particularly due to the performance of the party during by-elections.
“The last election and by elections gave him a wake-up call because most of the MPs are not doing anything notable in their constituencies.
“He has opened a hot line and party supporters will be calling on that line reporting the conduct of their MPs in constituencies,” the sources said.
They, however, said this move was widely seen as a way of dealing with factionalism in the party as some MPs will be victimized.
“Those that back another faction in the MDC have raised issues on that matter because they think it is a way of dealing with MPs that do not support the president.
“They are arguing that MPs must get the money and resources to foster development in their constituencies and not to just go and see people without doing anything meaningful. The party must avail some resources to them,” they said.
An MP who spoke on condition of anonymity said though it was good for them to go into constituencies, there was need for the party to support the initiative by availing resources to them.
“We were called to serve the people but we all know that the Constituency Development Fund is too little. If you translate it into US dollars, it is about US$8 000 so now we need to have supplements from the party,” he said.
Speaking at his Hope for the Nation address in Mbare recently, Chamisa announced that he was introducing a hot line and members of the party were supposed to report the conduct of their MPs.
“This time as a party we are making sure that everyone is inline and our MPs must go back to the people. We are going to introduce a hot line where people in the constituency call to tell us if their MPs are doing their work or not.
“We will not hesitate to stop you from seeking re-election if you are lazy. If people from your constituency complain we will deal with you. We are not going back on that one,” he said.
Government increased Constituency Development Fund (allocations to parliamentarians from $50 000 to $200 000 last year.
Most MPs said the money was too little for them to foster meaningful development in their constituencies.