ZHOMBE — MDC-T leader, Morgan Tsvangirai has urged party members to direct their energy towards dislodging President Robert Mugabe, who he accused of running down the country, rather than calling for his resignation.
BY BLESSED MHLANGA AND CLAYTON MASEKESA
Addressing a rally in Zhombe yesterday, Tsvangirai, who is under pressure from senior party members calling for leadership renewal, said those tired of fighting Mugabe must gracefully resign or take a rest from politics.
“Our problem is that we are now fighting internally when the crisis is Mugabe and Zanu PF who, owing to their lack of vision and leadership, are allowing the country to slide back to the economic crisis of 2008,” said Tsvangirai.
He added: “We are now at what we call the red sea moment and some of our comrades want to go back to Egypt … let me say if you have lost faith in the struggle, please rest.”
Among officials calling for leadership renewal is MDC-T deputy treasurer general, Elton Mangoma who has since been suspended from the party. The party’s secretary general Tendai Biti has however declared Mangoma’s suspension null and void.
Other senior MDC-T officials that have called for the former Prime Minister to step aside include party treasurer general Roy Bennett, former Harare mayor Elias Mudzuri and Ex-Marondera MP, Ian kay.
Biti, Mudzuri, Kay and Mangoma did not attend yesterday’s rally.
Despite the boycott, Tsvangirai said internal fights in the MDC-T were now a thing of the past.
“In the MDC, yes we have had our fights and those are over. We are now looking ahead,” he said.
Tsvangirai also told his supporters to stop worrying about succession battles in Zanu PF saying contenders to the throne were “nonentities”.
“Zanu PF is Mugabe and when he dies he is going to die with the party.
We have seen people getting excited about the Mujuru-Mnangagwa fights – don’t worry about those two. They are nonentities and we should not give them any credit. Mugabe is our problem,” Tsvangirai said.
He said the difference between MDC-T and Zanu PF was that: “I am not going to die with the party. I am going to step down when my time comes and leave power to a person chosen at congress by the people.”
MDC-T organising secretary, Nelson Chamisa told party supporters who were waving placards denouncing Biti, Mangoma and Settlement Chikwinya to destroy the placards.
The placards were then destroyed by security personnel before Tsvangirai told his supporters to stop the dirty war of labeling others sell-outs.
“Use that energy you are so passionate about against Zanu PF and Mugabe and not against your fellow party member… we don’t want infighting but equally the same defectors are not wanted in the MDC,” Tsvangirai said.
Meanwhile, MDC-T officials, Julius Magarangoma and Pishai Muchauraya who were suspended from the party last week have refused to vacate their offices.
The MDC-T early this month suspended Manicaland provincial chairperson Magarangoma and provincial party spokesperson Muchauraya over insubordination.
Muchauraya has denied having been served with a suspension letter.
“I am in charge and the official spokesperson. They failed to file charges against me,” said Muchauraya.
Muchauraya said the conduct of Chamisa and Mwonzora should be investigated.
“They are spreading falsehoods to the media and creating parallel structures within MDC-T Manicaland. This must be investigated thoroughly,” said Muchauraya.