25 February 2013

Zimbabwe: Diaspora Interest Sends Jitters in MDC-T

A NUMBER of MDC-T members in the Diaspora have submitted their curriculum vitae and applications to contest in the forthcoming elections, angering sitting MPs and local aspiring candidates who feel threatened. MDC-T however, challenged its legislators to stop being crybabies and to prove their worth during primary elections to be held soon.

This is happening as a new survey by the Mass Public Opinion Institute predicted that Zanu-PF will defeat MDC-T in the forthcoming elections.

The survey last week said Zanu-PF was likely to win parliamentary elections with 33 percent of the vote against MDC-T's 32 percent.

"The survey results suggest that the forthcoming parliamentary elections will be a closely fought battle between Zanu-PF (33 percent) and MDC-T (32 percent), while support for other political parties candidates such as Mavambo Kusile Dawn and Zapu approach zero (to the nearest whole number) with the MDC (Ncube) seeming to be maintaining its 1 percent support level," said MPOI.

MDC-T spokesperson Mr Douglas Mwonzora said his party will not stop Diasporans from contesting as long as they meet the criteria prescribed by the party.

One has to be an MDC-T member or closely associated with the party for at least five years to contest for any post.

Among the Diasporans is a serving British police officer Taurayi Newbold Chamboko who is eyeing Marvelous Khumalo's St Mary's House of Assembly seat.

Unconfirmed reports say former ZBC Radio 2 DJs Eric Knight and Ezra Sibanda are also eyeing seats in MDC-T and so is journalist Grace Kwinjeh.

Chamboko is a serving police officer with Bedfordshire Police in the United Kingdom.

Reads part of his CV: "An exceptionally successful and talented professional British Police Officer stationed at one of the country's busiest Luton Police Station.

"Extensive experience in crime investigation, statistics, crime prevention, courts, beat planning and management, intelligence collection and management.

"A member of the Black Police Association as a co-ordinator and advisor to senior management on race and equality. Qualifications in intelligence, security and law."

Chamboko says he is a qualified intelligence officer who has managed several police operations.

Citing Mr Elliot Pfebve and Mr Rodwell Mupungu as his referees, Mr Chamboko boasts of extensive experience in human intelligence collection and managing and running covert human intelligence sources.

"My Masters Degree Dissertation was on a study or analysis on the future of the terror group Al-Qaida," further reads the CV.

He claims to have managed salaries, wages, medical aid departments of three major companies in Zimbabwe, among other senior posts.

Mr Mwonzora confirmed a large number of Diasporans were eyeing seats on an MDC-T ticket.

"It is true we have a very sizeable number of Zimbabweans living in Diaspora who want to represent the party in Parliament.

"We are very excited that they want to be part of the team. All in all we have 4 800 people interested to stand for the MDC as MPs, mayors and councillors and this is a clear testimony that the party is alive," he said.

Mr Mwonzora said MDC-T was finalising the list of candidates who will contest in its primary elections.

On the disgruntlement by sitting MPs and aspiring local candidates over the scramble for seats by the Diasporans, Mr Mwonzora said: "Members of the Diaspora who are now coming back were working for the party wherever they were.

"We will not allow exclusion of other Zimbabweans from representing the party.

"The ultimate deciders on who will represent the party are the people themselves because we are going for primary elections and a confirmation exercise."

"No-one should complain about the other candidates. They must up the game and campaign for the people's mandate and not whimper about other candidates".

Legislators whose seats are under threat are disgruntled by the scramble for seats by the Diasporans who they claim ran away from the country at a time when they were supposed to be "in the trenches fighting Zanu-PF".

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