by Staff reporter
The MDC Alliance, a coalition of opposition political parties which came together to challenge Zanu PF is in trouble amid revelations MDC-T structures are resisting candidates seconded by partners.
The MDC-T is the biggest partner in the alliance, with an allocation of 114 candidates out of the 210 seats to be contested.
Despite enjoying a lion’s share of the seats, MDC-T members whose constituencies have been allocated to other alliance partners were reportedly not happy with the arrangement and have threatened to sabotage non- members of their party at the polls if leaders insisted on fielding them.
It all started with the party leadership in Matabeleland, where party Vice President Thokozani Khupe, with the backing of chairperson, Lovemore Moyo and Organising Secretary, Abednico Bhebhe openly denounced the alliance.
The three leaders have been boycotting crucial party meetings and Alliance gatherings in protest, demanding that Matebeleland be exempted from the coalition matrix. This irked some of the party youths who went on to physically attack them after they held a separate meeting to discuss the alliance after they had boycotted the launch of the alliance in Bulawayo.
Only last week, Party spokesperson, Obert Gutu, followed suit , openly declaring that he would contest in Harare East although the seat was allocated to the People’s Democratic Party, which has seconded former MDC Secretary General, Tendai Biti as the candidate for the constituency.
It has, however, emerged that there are more dissenting voices in constituencies which were MDC-T strongholds but were given to alliance partners.
In Dzivarasekwa, members of the District Executive have vowed to sabotage the Alliance’s preferred candidate, Edwin Mushoriwa a former Member of Parliament of the constituency who was booted out after dumping Tsvangirai for Biti.
The members told New Zimbabwe in separate interviews they were willing to vote for a Zanu PF candidate if Mushoriwa was imposed on them, arguing that he had failed the constituency before and was not resident in the constituency.
“We don’t want anyone who is not MDC-T and is not from Dzivarasekwa. For a long time we have been taken for granted with the party imposing candidates from outside the constituency, all of who have gone on to betray the party,” said one party district member who spoke on condition of anonymity.
He said most party members in the district were in agreement that they would not campaign or vote for Mushoriwa as they all preferred a candidate from the area.
In Kambuzuma, where the seat was also reportedly allocated to an alliance partner, the MDC structures there have their preferred candidate in one Islam Samadhosi.
The party members accuse those who negotiated in the alliance of protecting their own constituencies and giving away other people’s constituency.
“For example, Jameson Timba was a negotiator and he made sure that his Mount Pleasant seat was not touched, we can’t have people negotiating for themselves at the expense of others. It is better that the alliance issue be dropped altogether,” said another senior party leader who declined to be named.
The source said several constituencies where seats had been allocated to alliance partners were disgruntled although they had not yet come out in the open, adding this was likely to see the collapse of the alliance.
“There is a serious risk that we will have a winner in the presidential race but lose in the parliamentary elections if this situation is not addressed as a matter of urgency. This alliance has proved unpopular among party cadres,” he said.
Dzivareskwa District is said to have already written to the party expressing their reservations.
In Bindura North party structures also rejected Alliance candidate and Zimbabwe People First president Aggrippa Mutambara preferring former Bindura Mayor Tinashe Madamombe.
MDC Vice President, Nelson Chamisa, who is responsible for the allocation of seats, was not picking his phone. NewZimbabwe and The Guardian