MDC Harare youths shut door on Mwonzora …intra party democracy put to test

By Tafadzwa Muranganwa

As the opposition MDC Alliance elective congress nears in May, the fight for the party president position  is becoming intriguing with the MDC Alliance Harare youth assembly endorsing Nelson Chamisa  slamming the door on other  party presidential aspirants.

Addressing a press conference in the capital, MDC Alliance Harare youth assembly  vice chairman   Stanley Manyange  who read the resolutions  that came after two days  deliberations  did not mince his words when in apparent reference to Douglas Mwonzora who has shown keen interest to contest Chamisa and is being accused of getting support from Zanu PF leader, said it will be ‘reckless’ to support such a  candidate.

“A reckless and Zanu PF supported presidential candidate choice would weaken the party ahead of future elections,” said Manyange.

Mwonzora who has been quoted widely in local newspaper has  denied any links with the ruling party describing himself as a loyal opposition party member who has at many times troubled Zanu PF so much that it will be folly to believe in such allegations.

Quizzed on whether  this is not  undemocratic  to  shut out other candidates for  the presidential  post  while leaving other party position for contestation, Harare youth assembly secretary  Denford Ngadziore  blatantly argued that it was their democratic right .

“It is still our democratic right as Harare youth assembly to state that president Nelson Chamisa is not going to be contested  while other posts are open for  competition and there is nothing wrong about that ,”defended Ngadziore who is also Harare West ,Ward 16  councillor.

The opposition’s youth wing   is basing its endorsement of Chamisa on how the youthful leader fared in last year’s harmonised elections  arguing he is the only leader who can extricate many young people from the economic woes currently bedevilling the country.

The move by Nelson Chamisa loyalists to block Mwonzora ’s bid  has been  received with mixed reactions , while some are supporting Chamisa’s candidature they are others who  want the dictates of democracy to prevail so that the party  distances itself from  dictatorial tendencies usually associated with the ruling party, Zanu PF.

In 2014,the MDC Alliance leader Chamisa  was handed a heavy defeat by Douglas Mwonzora  for the secretary general despite that  ‘Wamba’  (the opposition leader’s  moniker) had been nominated by 9 provinces with the former Nyanga  North legislator only getting the backing of his home province Manicaland. Surprisingly, Mwonzora trounced Chamisa with  2,464 votes against Chamisa’s 1,756 votes.