By Idah Mhetu
MDC leader Nelson Chamisa has flexed his muscles and placed stringent conditions on all party Standing Committee members to keep to time tables and desist from bunking meetings.
It has been learnt that Chamisa has put in place financial penalties on all Standing Committee members who come to meetings late or fail to attend.
Failure to attend a meeting will attract a $100 penalty while coming late for a meeting will attract $25 penalty.
It is the first time and a novel idea in local politics for a party to impose such penalties as a way to whipping members into line and force them to stick to strict deadlines.
Party spokesperson Daniel Molokele confirmed the development but said this was just part of internal MDC hygiene aimed at instilling discipline at the very top of the party.
“These are internal issues being done to improve efficiency and encourage people to be responsible. It’s not written anywhere but just an administrative matter that was proposed in that context,” Molokele said.
Chamisa took charge in the chaotic aftermath of the death of founding leader Morgan Tsvangirai in February last year.
The youthful politician wasted no time in consolidating his position and was nominated unopposed at the party’s first congress without Tsvangirai since formation 20 years ago.
The former Kuwadzana MP, has also roped in key party loyalists most of whom lost at the May congress including former secretary general Douglas Mwonzora who later tried to defend his position after failing to get a nomination to aim for the top job.
Mwonzora lost to Chamisa’s ally Charlton Hwende and the Manicaland Senator has had to make do with an appointed position as the less glamorous deputy secretary for international relations.