Matabeleland sidelined by MDC-T tribalism


The Cabinet reshuffle by the MDC-T of its ministers in the unity government has exposed the real character of the MDC-T leader and the internal politics within that party, which point to bigger political struggles for control than what the nation and observers had suspected all long.
While the plotters of this reshuffle may wish to fool the masses into believing that this is a move meant to increase efficiency and enhance delivery, the political implications of this move paint a gloomy picture of the political fortunes of this party in the regional politics of Matabeland and consequently, the nation.
I will zero in on the reassignment of Gorden Moyo and the dropping of Thamsanqa Mahlangu.
Gorden Moyo, unlike Mahlangu who was dropped, believes that his reassignment is an elevation to the independent ministry.
However my view is different because I am shocked that Moyo, who has been a minister for close to two years, still doesn’t know that this is a useless ministry in the sense that all government enterprises and parastatals have their parent ministries.
I cannot understand how he will influence any decision in ministries without being accused of interference. As the minister of State, Moyo was better positioned to influence those decisions through the office of the Prime Minister. In that office too Moyo knew all the schemes of the Prime Minister and could have shot down and pushed aside those that were unfavourable to him or his people.
It is clear to me as it is to every one else, that this is a demotion. Moyo must wake up and see that the prime minister realised that he could not continue to have someone who was not part of the “kitchen cabinet” in his office; this is politics at play here as that party is building towards the elective congress.
My opinion is that Moyo might have proved to be an obstacle in the plans of the Prime Minister as the battle to prepare for the congress continues.
It very interesting that Moyo is one of the ministers who were co-opted to balance the tribal equation as MDC-T announced its cabinet at the inception of the government of national unity.
This was after the outcry at lack of representation of the Matebeleland region in that MDC camp. That first deployment might have landed Moyo in the wrong office, where he was uncomfortably too close to the Prime Minister, which meant that he was privy to the secrets of the MDC-T tribal wars. It should not be forgotten that the tribal division was one of the causes of the split when the Prime Minister was said not to be happy with the tribal conmposition of the national executive in which people from Matebeland region occupied “powerful” positions.
It is very surprising for Moyo to say that he was promoted when he has been removed from the position of influence to a position equivalent to that of a minister without portfolio, in the sense that whatever business he may be trying to take care of has already been taken charge of by other ministries.
It may also be that Moyo is speaking to save his face or just to protect his master’s decision. Being given that position was a token of appreciation for helping MDC-T win election through the activities of his Bulawayo Agenda
He has no choice but to praise-sing otherwise he will have to return to Pioneer House.
Thamsanqa Mahlangu has become a statistic of the ruthlessness of politics of the MDC-T.
It is worth mentioning that he was one of those that led a crusade to protect their leader from allegations of tribalism but today his being dropped is testimony to the contradictions of his teachings.
In politics if you find yourself dismissed in a way that is described as informal, according to media reports, then it clearly shows that you have fallen by the way side in the political game.
It is very clear that Mahlangu is now no longer an ally in the coming congress; the daggers are drawn. If indeed Mahlangu was fired for gross incompetence why not replace him with a leader from Matebeland region? The fact that Mahlangu was replaced by someone from Masvingo really shows that the recognition of the leadership from Matebeland region is not a priority in that party.
Mahlangu was not the only one from this region who is an MP; there are some eligible to be ministers. It is very unfortunate that they could not even find a youthful minister to take his position in government.
It is an embarrassment in the struggle for democracy to record yet another failure by Tsvangirai in the test for tolerance to opposition. Retaining Mudzuri proved too painful for him to bear. It has become public knowledge that Mudzuri has presidential ambitions and poses a threat to Tsvangirai’s presidency. His dismissal is proof enough that the Mudzuri is being thrown into political oblivion, far from the fray of national politics.
The insensitivity of MDC-T towards this region is obvious.
My final word is that people from this region should not surrender or quit political activism but consider their support for the parties that have shown a tendency to exploit and undermine them. A loud voice for proportional representation and devolution of power is needed.