Hlalo settles for committee member post

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Mzilikazi Senator Matson Hlalo, who recently raised a storm after he lost the MDC-T provincial chairman’s contest to Gorden Moyo, finally settled for the less influential post of provincial committee member at the close of elections Wednesday.

The Bulawayo MDC-T provincial elections were concluded on Tuesday night after three false starts following violent clashes between Hlalo and Moyo’s supporters.

Hlalo had declined to accept defeat alleging the elections which catapulted his rival to the chairman’s post were fraught with irregularities.

The standoff had threatened to derail the party’s national congress which starts in the city today (Thursday).

On Monday, party leader Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and the MDC-T standing committee members were in Bulawayo to quell intra-party violence and restore order in the province.

Tsvangirai upheld the election of Moyo and threatened to expel all party members accused of violence in the run-up to the party’s elective congress today (Thursday).

The outgoing chairperson Luveve Senator Agnes Mloyi also settled for a committee member’s post after losing the vice-chairperson’s post to Bulawayo Central MP, Dorcas Sibanda.

At the conclusion of the elections, three senators and two MPs had lost out in the provincial elections.

Senator Siphiwe Ncube lost the contest for treasurer’s post to Nic Brown.

Magwegwe MP Felix Magagula Sibanda also lost his bid for the information and publicity secretary’s post to Mandla Sibanda, a long-serving member of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Union.

Pelandaba MP Samuel Sandla Khumalo lost the deputy provincial secretary’s post as Pumula MP Albert Mhlanga bounced into the structures as the organising secretary.

In an interview after the conclusion of the elections, the new provincial chairman, Moyo, said the province was now ready for transformation.

“I accept the responsibility that I was given by the people of Bulawayo to drive the process of transformation and change and make sure that Bulawayo, as a metropolitan province is represented in national politics by people with substance,” he said.

Contacted for comment Hlalo said it was not important that he had lost a position because his “team” was still influential in the province.

“We are a majority in the province. The outgoing chairperson’s team is a majority in the province. If you care to find out who won the youth assembly and who won in the women’s assembly, you will see that we still have influence in the province,” he said.