The Morgan Tsvangirai-led MDC-T says it is shocked by recent overtures from president of the smaller faction of the MDC Welshman Ncube to form a “formidable” alliance in last- ditch attempts to dislodge President Robert Mugabe and Zanu PF from power in the next elections.
Observers say Ncube should have seen it coming following his unbridled and scathing attacks on the Premier labelling him an “uneducated person who has no capacity to deal with the country’s problems”.
MDC-T deputy spokesperson Thabita Khumalo told NewsDay her party learnt in disbelief and shock of Ncube’s advances despite his scornful utterances against Tsvangirai, a former trade unionist who switched from unionism to dabble in Zimbabwe’s treacherous political waters.
“It’s a bit shocking to hear that because he is the one who recently abused president Tsvangirai, that he is uneducated, so I am shocked. I don’t know whether it’s propaganda or what. As MDC, we have never called him names, but he has been lashing out at us. It’s just propaganda,” Khumalo said.
Another official, who preferred to remain anonymous, said working with Ncube was like “working with Zanu PF to fight Zanu PF”.
The insider claimed Ncube was an appendage of Zanu PF, an accusation Ncube has in the past dismissed as a fallacy.
And as a sign rifts between the two political parties continue to widen, MDC-T legislators heckled Ncube in Parliament on Tuesday.
Senior MDC-T officials said although politics was fluid, chances of working with Ncube were slim especially after he denigrated Tsvangirai in public adding that was a desperate attempt to remain politically relevant.
Stung by severe criticism and backlash after mocking Tsvangirai, Ncube, on Monday, made overtures to team up with the MDC-T and remove Zanu PF and its octogenarian leader from power.
Ncube stirred debated when he asked for opinions from his Facebook friends and followers on Twitter suggesting whether forming an alliance with MDC-T was a viable option.
The majority of respondents felt Ncube, Tsvangirai, Zapu leader Dumiso Dabengwa and Mavambo’s Simba Makoni needed to unite and fight Zanu PF, which party has enjoyed power since independence in 1980.
But following the backlash from supporters, Ncube posted a message on his Facebook Wall mooting there was a possibility of the two MDCs, which split in 2005 over participation in Senate elections, could regroup and work as a team once again.
He, however, immediately deleted the message on Tuesday for unknown reasons.
In an interview earlier this week, Ncube said although his party favoured a broad alliance to fight Zanu PF, he was sceptical the move would bear fruits because in the past, the MDC-T had been uncooperative.
Said Ncube: “We tried it in 2008. We devoted a lot of time negotiating, reached an agreement and signed it, but those who had no interest in it (the agreement) rejected it on the eve of the election. It can be a good idea, but it has no takers. It’s like saying I want to get married when I have no girlfriend.”
There was speculation the two MDCs would work hand-in-hand after Ncube’s party supported MDC-T chairperson Lovemore Moyo for the post of Speaker of the House of Assembly elections with some sections of the media reporting that negotiations for cooperation were underway.
Ncube said the MDC took the decision to back the MDC-T in support of national interest.