By Tonderai Saharo
MASVINGO: MDC President Nelson Chamisa has suspended the entire Masvingo provincial executive citing insubordination and incompetence.
MDC deputy national chair, Job Sikhala confirmed the suspension of the James Gumbi-led executive and said an “independent” commission will soon be announced to run the affairs of the party in Masvingo.
He said the members were notified of their suspensions when Chamisa met the provincial executive members in Masvingo Sunday.
“The executive was suspended for insubordination after it was found there were 16 districts in the province which had parallel structures and also there were no records of meetings taking place in the districts and generally there was lack of leadership visibility in the entire province,” Sikhala said.
However, the suspension of the executive has widened cracks in the already divided party in Masvingo with insiders saying the suspensions were meant to give an opportunity to former party “rebels” led by Tongai Matutu to run the province.
MDC members accuse the “rebels” of fomenting divisions, creating parallel structures and unwilling to corporate with the provincial leadership in conducting party activities. This forced Chamisa to read the riot act on the Masvingo executive and suspend the members.
Meanwhile, insiders in the MDC added that although the executive had accepted the suspensions, they raised a red flag saying Chamisa had no power to suspend provincial structures and he was in breach of the party’s constitution.
They also accused Chamisa of suspending the executive without conducting investigations on the alleged offences.
“All the members accepted the suspension but the president had no constitutional power to suspend the executive.
“What he did was in breach of the constitution as it is clear that the president is only mandated to suspend members of the national executive.
“The suspension of the provincial structures should have been done by the national executive committee after investigations have been done and the president had no constitutional power to suspend provincial members,” said the insider.