The Herald (Harare)

Zimbabwe: MDC-T Rejects ZCTU Boss

The Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions secretary-general Mr Japhet Moyo's attempt to venture into politics suffered a stillbirth after MDC-T structures in Chitungwiza rejected his curriculum vitae.

Mr Moyo was reportedly eyeing Mr Fidelis Mhashu's Chitungwiza North constituency. He has been quite visible in the constituency of late.

However, Mr Moyo is denying claims that he is eying the constituency. According to sources the ZCTU is not comfortable with Mr Moyo's decision to join politics. Well-placed sources within the MDC-T told The Herald that Mr Moyo's CV was rejected for a number of reasons.

"The MDC-T structures in Chitungwiza rejected him on the basis that he has not been a member of the party for consecutive five years as required by the regulations," a source said.

"He only joined the MDC-T three months ago during a restructuring exercise and became a member of branch two in Ward 21. He is not a paid up member, is not a registered voter in the constituency and neither does he reside there."

Mr Moyo had reportedly roped in some youths to do the groundwork for him in the constituency ahead of national elections scheduled for this year.

"He had started attending MDC-T meetings in Chitungwiza. Only three months ago he was introduced to a gathering at a rally in St Mary's by organising secretary Mr Nelson Chamisa. There is talk that his candidacy was being backed at the highest level of the party although the feeling at the provincial level is that he is a 'foreigner' in Chitungwiza," the source said.

In an interview yesterday, Mr Moyo denied attempting to join the MDC-T saying his contract with ZCTU did not allow him to do so.

"I am a full-time staff here and I cannot be an MP for the MDC-T, Zanu-PF or Mavambo," said Mr Moyo.

"The workers are not comfortable with that and once you enter politics you are out. In my case there is nowhere I can have a position in politics."

Mr Moyo said he was "not interested in politics now" saying when time comes "I will either join Zanu-PF or the MDC".

According to the source, the ZCTU was not comfortable with Mr Moyo's decision to venture into politics.

"The ZCTU leadership had warned him against taking a political office. The ZCTU national council was against the idea but he was prepared to resign in the event he wins the elections. The ZCTU wanted him to resign first," the source added.

A number of former ZCTU officials have joined politics in the past and among them are Mr Morgan Tsvangirai, Ms Thabitha Khumalo and Ms Lucia Matibenga. All has not been well in the ZCTU since the emergence of the inclusive Government with the once vocal labour body now almost non-existant. Donor funding has reportedly dwindled as Western nations who allegedly bankrolled the organisation over the years are facing mounting economic challenges.

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