BY Brenna Matendere
MDC-T interim leader Thokozani Khupe has crossed swords with party acting secretary-general Douglas Mwonzora after the latter last week reportedly sponsored a clique of Harare province structures to nominate him for the position of president at the extraordinary congress.
A gathering of about 38 party activists held a meeting at Harvest House on Tuesday last week and resolved to nominate Mwonzora for the presidency.
The development has reportedly miffed Khupe who expects to be elected substantive president unopposed at the congress, whose date is yet to be announced.
In a communique addressed to the party leadership by interim chairman Morgen Komichi obtained by NewsDay, Mwonzora’s nomination was described as illegal.
Part of the communique read: “On Wednesday July 15, 2020, the standing committee set and resolved that the following happen: Since we have failed to get clearance from the police and the Health ministry because of COVID-19 restrictions on movement and gatherings, we immediately instructed our lawyers to approach the courts to seek variation of the timeframes set out in the judgment that actuated the extraordinary congress.”
Komich added: “The organising department was tasked with compiling the list of genuine 2014 delegates as they stand today… it was directed that all provinces stop any nomination processes until the issuance of a directive with guidelines by the standing committee.
“Harare provincial meeting (which nominated Mwonzora) and its produce was, therefore, a defiance of procedures, processes and the leadership and must be condemned and dismissed by all.
“We must observe discipline and order at all times as we move towards our historic extraordinary congress which is a constitutional requirement which must be fulfilled.”
Sources yesterday told NewsDay that the meeting, which had nominated Mwonzora, did not constitute a quorum as only 38 members were in attendance instead of 568.
“Harare has 24 districts and 53 wards. Therefore, you are expecting at least 568 people as Harare delegates. Their meeting chaired by Simon Hove had 38 people and 25 were not congress delegates so it was not properly constituted,” the source said.
MDC-T deputy spokesperson Khalipani Phugeni yesterday confirmed that Mwonzora’s nomination had been cancelled.
“The process for nominations will only start when our court application for variation of congress dates has been ruled upon. The Harare meeting was a gathering of a few MDC-T leaders and their friends bound by political adventurism and mischief. Their purported nomination is, therefore, null and void,” he said.
Yesterday, Mwonzora was not picking calls when sought for comment.