Tsvangirai burial on Monday

THE late MDC-T leader and former Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, who died at a South African hospital on Wednesday after losing a two-year battle with colon cancer, will be laid to rest in Buhera on Monday, party secretary-general, Douglas Mwonzora said yesterday.

BY RICHARD CHIDZA/SILAS NKALA

Mwonzora told NewsDay Weekender, in an interview, that Tsvangirai’s body was expected this weekend, with the possibility of a mass funeral in Harare before the revered opposition leader is taken to his final resting place in Humanikwa village of Buhera.

“Vice-president Khupe is in South Africa, as we speak, to make arrangements for the repatriation of the president’s body. They should arrive home either tonight (last night or early today),” he said.

“Given president Tsvangirai’s stature, we would have wanted to take him to every town in Zimbabwe. He is the people’s president, a man of the people, but it will be a logistical nightmare, given the different stakeholders involved including the State. However, we are going to have a mass funeral wake for him in Harare on Sunday, but we are still trying to make a decision on the venue. It will either be Rufaro Stadium, National Sports Stadium or Freedom Square (space behind Rainbow Towers in Harare.”

Mwonzora said burial would be on Monday in Buhera.

In a thinly-veiled attack on Chamisa, Khupe, while paying tribute to Tsvangirai, issued a stinging statement on arrival in Johannesburg, distancing the MDC-T from what she described as “cheap politics” by some leaders since the MDC-T leader’s death.

“May I state on good authority that the family and, indeed, the majority of the party leadership, stand distanced from any and all of the disturbing cheap politics we have witnessed since the passing-on of president Tsvangirai,” she said.

The only one of the three MDC-T vice-presidents elected at congress in 2014, Khupe apologised for the “unAfrican” acts by “misguided comrades”.
“As a deputy president, who unanimously received her mandate to serve as president Tsvangirai’s second-in-charge at our 2014 MDC-T national congress, I would have failed in my duty and in reverence of his memory if I did not call to order the misguided comrades behind these unAfrican, uncultured and barbaric chain of events that have sought to draw attention away from the tragic loss to our party and country.

“I profusely apologise to all who may have been offended by the uncharacteristic representation of our party at such a time as this, and wish to assure the nation that MDC-T is guided by a constitution that was born in a Zimbabwean cultural context of ubuntu/hunhu — that sacred age-old code of self-dignity and respect for the departed,” the former Deputy Prime Minister said.

Chamisa forced through his appointment as acting party leader hours after Tsvangirai died.


According to Mwonzora, senior MDC-T leaders on Wednesday night had agreed it would be prudent to cancel pre-arranged national executive and national council meetings following the death of the party’s founding father.

“We met and agreed that it would not be prudent to go ahead with normal party business in the face of such an abnormality. But after a while, vice-president Chamisa came back and insisted the meetings should go ahead to formally inform party organs of the death our president and the logistics for the funeral,” he said.

“We agreed to this compromise, but then when the national executive meeting began, there were questions on who would act as president and a resolution was passed to the effect that Chamisa would act for the period of the funeral to receive dignitaries and other ceremonial issues to avoid confusion.”

However, a stormy meeting of party members, sitting as a national council, forced changes to this resolution to give Chamisa power to act as president for a year.

MDC-T national organising secretary, Abednico Bhebhe, who is currently in Turkey on business, told NewsDay Weekender yesterday that Chamisa was offside in imposing himself as leader of the opposition party when people were still mourning Tsvangirai.

He said Chamisa’s appointment as interim leader was “illegal and selfish”.

“I agree with Khupe that cultural values and norms do not allow what these guys did. African culture across all tribes is uniform. Morally, it’s completely out of order. It smells the (former President Robert) Mugabe way of doing things,” Bhebhe said.

“We are saying to the supporters, let’s wait for the burial of our leader and thereafter, we will work on correcting all that has been done wrong.”
He claimed that a Chamisa ally confided in him that they were misled by the Kuwadzana East MP into an “illegality”

7 Comments

  1. ..aaaa khupe une godo iwe.the same very constitution was used to appoint chamisa as acting,, the sooner u accept the better, cause we are not turning back,u cannot lead MDC never office ya va Tsvangirai hauigari ukunyeperwa ,mukadzi asina hunhu,gara pasi apo ,dai uchitomboziya kuti pa varsity pangu team ririkufarira chamisa sei ka,waive usingatombodaro.we are talking of us youths,our future

    1. A varsity student who is sympathetic to a leader, who does not follow the law and the spirit of the constitution of the party, is a recipe for disaster. Do not be swayed by the wave of charisma and youth. Though touted to lead, on this one he scored an own goal. VP Khupe is 100% correct. VP Khupe was the one who was supposed to lead in thee trying times and thereaftrr the party goes for an extra ordinary congress were Nero would be voted into power. After all , Chamisa needs Khupe, Khupe needs Chamisa and the MDC needs both Khupe and Chamisa. #OperationRestoreTsvangirai’sLegacy
      Rest In Peace Save
      Gandagobvu
      Chikara cheZanu

  2. Chamisa showed an unbridled quest for power here. True his manner given the circumstances was unAfrican and VP Khupe is correct. Why didn’t Chamisa and company not wait for the funeral wake? By so doing, he has dug his own grave in as far as becoming the prty’s leader is concerned because he has just shown this knack for power and ambition and not feeling for the pain of others. Which lays bare his immaturity which l have always pointed to on this platform. Imagine he does such a boob ad leader of the country. He is not yet ready to lead the party. Someone (read Khupe, Mudzuri or whoever) should lead and he becomes the deputy for another five years until such a time he has matured.

  3. I think Nero jumped the gun too early. I like him to lead but on this one he misfired because sometimes it pays to play the dumb and let the electorate decide for themselves. It is unheard of in our culture to declare yourself heir to a deceased person’s estate before the lapse of the funeral rites. I think he needs to be a bit mature for someone who recently turned forty.

  4. We are not going back on advocate Nelson appointment, 191 ouf 215 appointed him president constitutional, almost 90% of the council ,then khupe comes,says no ,who are upowrr hungry individual

  5. to hell khupe don b power hungry .viva chamisa tiende canaan.

  6. The constitution must be followed. Chamisa is fast becoming a Mugabe with how he is using violence and ignoring the constitution. I would have wanted him to lead but nomore after this show of poor decision making.
    Bye Morgan.

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