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Chamisa Faces Anti Alliance Rebellion In Masvingo

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By Upenyu Chaota

 

Bikita, April 15, 2018 - THE loose coalition agreement between MDC-T and its partners faces further strain after party provincial chair for Masvingo, James Gumbi told party leader Nelson Chamisa in his face at a Friday rally here that they will not allow their new found allies to contest Bikita constituencies.

 

Gumbi challenged MDC-T President Nelson Chamisa in front of party supporters at Nyika Growth Point that themain opposition must not compromise to a point of letting go of some of their stronghold constituencies.

Chamisa is also leader of the seven party MDC Alliance that has joined forces to challenge Zanu PF in the next elections as a united front.

Gumbi joins the ousted MDC-T vice president Thokozani Khupe who fell out with her party colleagues over the party’s decision to form a loose merger with other opposition parties.

For the better part of last year, Khupe boycotted party meetings which were chaired by then MDC-T President Morgan Tsvangirai, now late, in protest over the party’s decision to relinquish some of its safe seats in stronghold Matebeleland provinces.

“The Alliance document has a clause to the effect that the party most popular in a specific constituency will provide candidates. I made a declaration in front of the late Tsvangirai that some of the constituencies which we are emotionally connected to will not be challenged by our Alliance partners.

“My request Mr President is that you negotiate with your Alliance partners to give us space so that we arrange our programmes and they do theirs. On the issue of sharing constituencies, our Alliance partners must realise that there are emotional interests on some seats like Bikita because some people were killed and tortured here.

“So I will allow anyone to contest in those constituencies that our people suffered over my dead body,” charged Gumbi.

As per the Alliance agreement, Bikita East has been reserved for Jacob Ngarivhume’s Transform Zimbabwe (TZ) party.

In the run up to the 2008 presidential June runoff, the ruling Zanu PF launched a terror campaign against the MDC-T supporters with Bikita and Zaka in Masvingo being the most terrorised.

MDC-T supporters were brutalised and killed, some petrol bombed in the Zaka district office leading Tsvangirai pulling out of the race to protect his supporters.

On his part, Chamisa humbled Gumbi saying this election needs all opposition parties to pool their resources together to defeat Zanu PF.

“I listened to chairman Gumbi making a declaration. I listened to you saying it cannot be done but we say no because we have the vision of our late leader. President Tsvangirai told me to work with everyone and I will be Joshua.

“Joshua doesn’t walk alone; he needs helpers. On that you don’t make a declaration. We are now giving you direction and it will not be contested because that is leadership and that’s direction.

“When we give you direction you follow, you don’t come and question why it has been done the way it is. We however, will consider the strongest candidate in each constituency,” said Chamisa.

Political analyst Dr Takavafira Zhou, in his memoirs, wrote “As much as we are not against the issue of an Alliance, we must also note that we were too generous in allocating constituencies to partners who do not have a foothold in some areas.

 

“So as much as the Alliance is a way of maximising votes, we may end up frustrating voters if we are not careful in our distribution matrix. The idea of the Alliance is noble but there was no scientific way in distributing some constituencies so much that a rationalisation process is needed”.

 

 

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