Zimbabwe: MDC-T Tension As Tsvangirai Appoints Chamisa Acting President

From left, MDC Alliance leaders Douglas Mwonzora, Tendai Biti and Nelson Chamisa (file photo).
7 February 2018

Ailing MDC-T leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, on Wednesday, effectively anointed youthful Nelson Chamisa albeit for a short stint after allowing him to take charge until he (Morgan) "returns" from South Africa.

With Tsvangirai battling colon cancer, Chamisa was left to chair the MDC Alliance while another deputy Elias Mudzuri took charge of the party a situation that created two centres of power and succession friction between the two.

But according to a statement from MDC-T director of communications, Luke Tamborinyoka, Chamisa was also made party acting president because Mudzuri is apparently in South Africa along with the other deputy Thokozani Khule.

"President Morgan Tsvangirai has, with effect from today, 7 February 2018, affirmed vice president Hon. Nelson Chamisa as the acting president of the party by operation of the Constitution until the president's return," Tamborinyoka said.

Tamborinyoka did not say what would happen when Mudzuri returns.

This comes after reports, early this week, said Tsvangirai' was actually on life support with senior party officials indicating the worst could happen.

"This is in light of the President's absence and that of the two other vice Presidents who are both in South Africa. VP Chamisa also continues in his assigned duties as the acting chairperson of the MDC Alliance," the statement said.

Mudzuri and Chamisa have clashed over who is senior given they are both acting in different capacities with critics arguing Tsvangirai could have exacerbated the situation by giving the two almost identical powers.

Also, another co-VP, Khupe, is reportedly at loggerheads with Chamisa. Khupe was, all along, the only VP until Tsvangirai appointed both Chamisa and Mudzuri last year.

New Zimbabwe reported recently how Tsvangirai had created tension in the party by appointing Mudzuri and Chamisa. MDC-T chair, Lovemore Moyo, said the party needed "legal fundis" to help move on.

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