The MDC-T says it is much wiser on how it will approach coalition talks and who it will likely partner in the 2018 general elections following its dance with Norton legislator, Temba Mliswa.
BY BLESSED MHLANGA
The MDC-T and Mliswa pact appears to have gone sour after the former Zanu PF Mashonaland West chairperson told Morgan Tsvangirai and his party to “go to hell” during a rally in Norton over the weekend.
Party secretary-general, Douglas Mwonzora yesterday said his party was much the wiser following the recent events and would now be using its experiences to make strategic decisions ahead of the 2018 polls.
“We went into Norton to support Mliswa with our eyes open. We went in there for our own strategic reasons and we got the result and information that we wanted,” he said. “This information is going to be used to make strategic decisions for 2018, whether we are going into elections, as a coalition or individual party.”
Mliswa’s fallout with the MDC-T has seen its critics and party supporters questioning the wisdom of the party leadership in supporting expelled Zanu PF members, who then return to the ruling party after riding on their support.
The MDC-T sided with Jonathan Moyo when he ran as an independent candidate in Tsholotsho in 2008, but the opposition was left with egg on the face when he retraced his footsteps back to Zanu PF.
Mwonzora, however, said their support for Mliswa was not tied to any conditions and they had no regrets in backing his candidacy in Norton.
“We were never duped. Our support for his candidacy was not based on the condition that he should become our member. Tsvangirai is happy that he supported his candidature, but he did not attend the celebration because for him, nothing has changed in Zimbabwe to warrant a celebration,” he said.
Mliswa said he lashed out at Tsvangirai, telling him to go to hell after his party stopped people from attending his celebration rally because their leader was snubbing him.
The outspoken legislator said he had acted out of emotion before announcing that he was backing Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa to succeed President Mugabe.
Mwonzora said, while it was not mature to be unleashing insults at others, Mliswa was offside.
“If I were Mliswa, I would not insult Tsvangirai or the MDC,” he said.