By Costa Nkomo
SERIOUS fissures have emerged ahead of the MDC-T extraordinary congress set for today (Saturday) as rival factions scuttled the process leading to its abandonment.
The opposition party’s spokesperson, Tapiwa Mashakada confirmed Saturday afternoon that the congress was no longer taking place.
He, however, played down the infighting in the party blaming logistical challenges as the reason why the congress failed to take place.
“I have to advise all our MDC-T party structures, supporters and delegates that the much awaited EOC (extraordinary congress) has been postponed to a date soon to be advised,” Mashakada said.
“This development has been necessitated by logistical challenges that we underestimated and these are being sorted out so that party holds a seamless extraordinary congress. We owe it to our members to hold a transparent, democratic and credible congress that will elect the successor to our late iconic leader, Morgan Tsvangirai.
“The decision to postpone congress was arrived at after all the contestants agreed that more preparations needed to be done in order to deliver a credible congress that will reflect the will of the 4 500 MDC-T delegates,” said Mashakada.
The candidates at the extraordinary congress are; MDC-T interim president Thokozani Khupe, Douglas Mwonzora, Morgen Komichi and Elias Mudzuri.
However, sources in the opposition party said there was serious infighting among the rival candidates.
The party’s standing committee was Saturday morning and afternoon locked-up in a heated meeting at the party’s headquarters Morgan Richard Tsvangirai House better known as Harvest House to iron out their differences.
According to sources, Khupe is alleged to be accusing Mwonzora of mobilising people who were not in the 2014 party structures to attend as delegates and vote.
The March 2020 Supreme Court ruling says the MDC-T 2014 structures should vote and elect a new leader to replace Tsvangirai who died in 2018.
However, Mwonzora who is reported to have bused in hundreds of people from Manicaland province wanted the congress to proceed, but Khupe, Mudzuri and Komichi, ganged up against him. Mwonzora is a senator in Nyanga district, which is in Manicaland.
“Hundreds of people from Manicaland are stuck at Harvest House as the congress has been blocked by the other candidates,” one of the sources told NewZimbabwe.com.