Zimbabwe: Fed-Up Gutu 'Quits' Violent MDC-T

Photo: The Herald
MDC-T spokesperson Obert Gutu.
21 February 2018

Harare — MDC-T spokesperson Obert Gutu says he is quitting the opposition party which has been rocked by violence and a bitter leadership dispute.

The development comes after top party officials were attacked by suspected MDC-T youths at Tuesday's burial of founding leader Morga Tsvangirai Tuesday.

Zimbabwe's country's biggest opposition party was at war over Tsvangirai's succession with divisions spiking even as the former prime minister fought his last against colon cancer.

The leadership row reached fever pitch even as Tsvangirai was dying at a South African hospital with deputies Nelson Chamisa, Thokozani Khuphe and Elias Mudzuri fighting over who was acting party president.

Chamisa then called a national council meeting which elected him leader as Tsvangirai's death was announced. His rivals did not attend the meeting.

Gutu had warned, during the bitter public exchanges, that he would make a "big announcement" once the party leader was laid to rest.

The announcement came via Twitter on Wednesday.

"I am not going to continue associating myself with an organisation that advocates for violence and thuggery," he wrote.

"I am a principled politician and professional. I am not quitting politics. I am going to contest in Harare East constituency in the 2018 elections."

He added;

Violence and thuggery as a tool for political mobilisation is simply not acceptable in my scheme of things.We are supposed to be a political party and not a rag tag armed militia. - Obert Gutu (@GutuObert) February 21, 2018

Asked to confirm he was resigning from the MDC-T, Gutu was non-committal.

"It is basic simple English that does not need serious analysis. You will see in the coming few weeks," he said.

Tuesday's burial of Tsvangirai in Buhera was overshadowed by attacks on deputy Khupe and secretary general Douglas Mwonzora who are seen as opposed to Chamisa's ascendancy to the presidency.

Mwonzora has been insisting that the party's new leader would be chosen by an elective congress.

Khupe also suffered violence at the hands of party youths in August last year for snubbing the public rally called to announce the MDC Alliance.

The coalition was formed by Tsvangirai in a bid to establish a united front against the ruling Zanu PF party in general elections due this year.

Khupe and her allies in the MDC-T have publicly voiced opposition to the allocation of parliamentary seats to alliance partners and even boycotted recent meetings of the party's executive council.

See What Everyone is Watching

More From: New Zimbabwe

Don't Miss

AllAfrica publishes around 600 reports a day from more than 150 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.