More than 20 MPs walked out of Parliament on Thursday in protest over the alleged expulsion of the Deputy Speaker of the House of Assembly, Nomalanga Khumalo, from her party, the Welshman Ncube-led MDC.
The MPs walked out while Ncube was moving a motion that the National Incomes and Pricing Commission Bill be restored on the Order Paper after it could not be debated in the previous session of Parliament.
The irate Zanu PF and MDC-T MPs refused to listen to Ncube’s submissions and interjected, calling him a “party-less president who had no members in his party as he had fired several of them”.
Ncube’s MDC has seven MPs although the party says it now doubts the loyalty of three legislators including Khumalo.
Khumalo, who was the presiding Speaker in the House of Assembly during the melee, failed to bring the House to order as the MPs continued jeering at the Industry and Commerce minister.
There were reports early this week quoting Ncube saying the Umzingwane MP had been fired from the party because she had been working with the rival MDC-T.
Khumalo had declared her allegiance to Arthur Mutambara, who is challenging Ncube’s elevation to the party’s presidency.
But MDC deputy spokesman Kurauone Chihwayi on Thursday said Khumalo had not been fired from the party.
Khumalo appealed to the MPs to give Ncube the floor, but failed to stop the jeering.
In interviews with journalists outside Parliament, the MPs labelled Ncube an anti-feminist and a dictator.
Kadoma Central MP (MDC-T) Editor Matamisa said the firing of Khumalo had been unfortunate because every political party had been trying to promote women.
She said Ncube had the guts to fire the only woman who won a seat in the MDC and even went on to win elections for Deputy Speaker of the House of Assembly.
Zengeza West MP Collen Gwiyo and Nkulumane MP Thamsanqa Mahlangu (both MDC-T) weighed in saying Ncube had an attitude problem.
MDC-T deputy chairperson Thabitha Khumalo said it was unfortunate that there were some leaders bent on victimising women while the whole world was campaigning for equal representation in all sectors.