MOVEMENT for Democratic Change (MDC) leader, Welshman Ncube, faces revolt from members not happy with a number of issues, top on the list being the nomination of Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga as one of the officials to go to Parliament on the proportional representation ticket.
Misihairabwi-Mushonga, the party’s secretary general, was thrown a political lifeline after her name was included on the Matabeleland South party list for proportional representation to earn her a place in Parliament, triggering consternation from party members from that province who contend that she was an outsider who should not have benefitted from that ticket.
For a party that rides on devolution of power as its main promise of governance, Misihairabwi-Mushonga’s emergence in Matabeleland South divided the MDC amid claims by some provincial members that she had been imposed on them.
A source this week said the party’s standing committee meeting held on September 8 touched on the issue, but there was no concrete decision on the matter. Some party members are pushing for a national council meeting at the end of this month to come up with a final decision on the matter.
There are some party members who are said to be pushing for Misihairabwi-Mushonga’s recalling from Parliament.
Sources said Ncube and Paul Themba Nyathi, one of the senior party members from Matabeleland South, were said to be fighting in the party’s secretary general’s corner and are against the holding of a national council meeting where the matter would be deliberated.
“The majority of national executive members are organising a national council meeting with or without Welshman, Nyathi and Priscilla. National council will look at the party’s performance since congress, the Priscilla issue, behaviour of some management committee members, roadmap to 2018, state and behaviour of standing committee members, kitchen cabinet, a kangaroo meeting held in Bulawayo on September 16 to push a tribal agenda,” said the source.
There are also allegations of corruption that are being levelled against a senior member of the party in a case that is likely to open a can of worms.
Contacted for comment MDC spokesperson, Kurauone Chihwayi, denied that there were divisions, but said that the party would not hesitate to replace non performers.
“The MDC met on September 8 and deliberated on a number of issues. The party will channel most of its resources, time and energy towards strengthening party structures and rallying troops for future political processes. The MDC would not hesitate to re-organise its machinery if the need arise. We are going to identify sharpshooters to replace those misfiring,” said Chihwayi.
Three weeks ago, suspended Matabeleland South provincial chairperson, Petros Mkwena told The Financial Gazette in an interview that members in the province had approached him expressing reservations on Misihairabwi-Mushonga’s representation.
Mkwena said he had no answers on the inclusion of the party’s secretary general on the province’s proportional representation list since it was done when he was on suspension.
On why he was suspended, Mkwena just said, “The suspension was a nonsensical move by great pretenders and opportunists who wanted to take advantage of the election.”