THE opposition MDC-T’s manifesto launch hangs in the balance after a crucial policy indaba was postponed due to lack of interest from key officials, it has been learnt.
BY RICHARD CHIDZA
Party leader, Nelson Chamisa, who before assuming the reins of power in the wake of the death of founding president, Morgan Tsvangirai last month headed the opposition party’s policy division, this week summoned portfolio secretaries for the crucial gathering, but only a handful responded.
“Only a few people, about seven out of over 60 people came for the meeting. It was a flop to such an extent that the meeting had to be moved to a later date that we are yet to be advised,” NewsDay heard.
“The policy indaba was supposed to come up with a draft that will feed into the manifesto for the upcoming elections. That is a very urgent issue the party has to resolve very quickly.”
The meeting, sources said, was supposed to be attended by senior national executive members, as well as all portfolio members in-charge of different departments.
“The national executive members, all portfolio secretaries and other senior leaders, who should attend just inexplicably did not turn up. Something is wrong and the Bulawayo violence could not have come at a worse time for the party,” another source said.
However, MDC-T director of communications and Chamisa’s spokesperson, Luke Tamborinyoka played down the policy “flop” issue.
“It (policy meeting) will be held next week on March 16. I am not sure about the figures of who is supposed to attend, but it’s a lie to say it flopped.
“This gathering is like your cabinet and surely they cannot be 67 of them. It was just a question of logistical issues that we are sorting out and next week its on,” he said.
Violence broke out in Bulawayo on Sunday, leaving hordes injured, as the internal power struggle in the MDC-T threatened to tip the party over the edge.
Party deputy president, Thokozani Khupe, who continues to claim that she is the constitutional interim leader of the party, once again found herself at the sharp end of the intra-party violence.
Khupe escaped unhurt for the second time inside two months after she was accosted by angry youth at Tsvangirai’s burial and had to seek refuge in a hut.
Chamisa has stuck to his guns and has gone about consolidating his position, including lining up rallies across the country. He has already held one rally in Chinhoyi that has been described as a “success”.