MDC-T President Nelson Chamisa has threatened to fire the party’s defiant deputy leader Thokozani Khuphe and elevate legislator Thabitha Khumalo instead.
Khuphe is opposing Chamisa’s assumption of power following the death of the MDC-T’s founding president Morgan Tsvangirai.
“You ceased to be a team player when MRT (Tsvangirai) heeded people’s calls for a united front against Zanu PF. Please, let the 7 days expire.
“We pray for Thabitha Khumalo to be VP (vice president),” said Chamisa in Twitter row with Khuphe this Friday.
Chamisa’s leadership has faced opposition from Khuphe, co-vice president Elias Mudzuri, secretary general Douglas Mwonzora and national spokesman Obert Gutu.
Khuphe maintains that the process used by Chamisa to takeover power was unconstitutional and insists that she is the legitimate acting president, having been elected by congress while Chamisa and Mudzuri merely appointed by Tsvangirai.
Chamisa was on Thursday endorsement as substantive part leader by the MDC-T’s national executive and also by the national council at a meeting held in the capital.
The meeting gave Khupe, national chairperson Lovemore Moyo and organising secretary Abednigo Bhebhe one week to shape in or risk expulsion from the party.
Party spokesperson Gutu was suspended for “indiscipline” and replaced by Khumalo, who, according to Chamisa, was now lined up for Khuphe’s post as vice president.
Khuphe, taking to social media, condemned the changes and threats against her.
“It is regrettable and very revealing that while the Guardians Council leadership is yet ceased with sensitive matters in the party, some take pleasure in bullish threats, ultimatums and suspensions,” she said on Twitter.
She rejected claims that she had boycotted party activities, saying; “For the record, I have always been Acting President of MDC-T in the absence of the late President Tsvangirai since 2006, up until the late president left Zimbabwe on what was to be his last trip to South Africa in January 2018, when he left Hon Elias Mudzuri as Acting President.
“This means that by all manner of calculations, when he passed away I had not been away from party business for 8 months as widely claimed.
“I last saw President Tsvangirai alive on the 28th of January 2018. I made an effort to resolve issues in the MDC-T by going in person to meet & share notes with Hon Chamisa at his law chambers on the 13th of February 2018, a day before President Tsvangirai passed on.”
Chamisa however, retorted, “That ain’t smart Dr. You refused to meet MRT (Tsvangirai) in Harare saying wasn’t safe for you but there you were, in Chamisa chambers.”
He added; “(Khuphe) is just stubborn; it’s all about positioning herself without the people (at) heart. Greedy and opportunist she is, I can say!”
Responding, Khuphe said; “A comment yet more revealing of the characters that support bullish political tactics!
“With all due respect Mr, I may be a woman, but I am not easily fazed by such. Very resolute, & on principle, very unflinching! CONSTITUTIONALISM & DEMOCRACY are not a respector of any person.”