In an interview with The Standard MDC vice-president Elias Mudzuri recalls how control of the party was “unconstitutionally” transferred to current President Nelson Chamisa following the late Morgan Tsvangirai’s death.
Mudziro had been asked: After Tsvangirai’s death you were engaged in a tussle for the control of the MDC with Chamisa and early this year you were targeted for attending a meeting with Mnangagwa. Have you ever felt isolated and frustrated by those internal conflicts?
I’ve not felt isolated at all, the people have always been clear about what they want.
It’s not possible to be isolated when the party’s structures are fully behind you. I felt a little frustrated when the constitution was not being followed.
When the late Morgan Tsvangirai left for South Africa on his last journey (may his soul rest in peace), he appointed me in front of other standing committee
members to act on his behalf as president of the party until he returned.
When he passed on, after all burial proceedings were done with, I enquired from the party’s organs between congress about the best route to take for the party in view of the fact that VP Chamisa was claiming to have also been appointed acting president by the late president via a tweet.
On realising that a leadership dispute would negatively affect our party, elections were very near, I talked with Dr (Thokozani) Khupe, who had been elected VP from our last congress, to take over the reins of the party and to call for an extraordinary congress that would choose president Tsvangirai’s successor.
The constitution was very clear on what should happen when a president dies or resigns from office, but things didn’t go according to plan.
There was a general attack and purging of some senior party members by some unruly members of the party.
Some of the attackers were rumoured to be from outside the party.
In politics you go through bumpy rides and this was not the first one.
I experienced persecution and violence at the hands of (the former president Robert) Mugabe including an attack at my home.
It gave me greater strength and resolve to fight for what I believe is right.
In fighting for what is right, you are never isolated or alone, there are always others right there with you and urging you on.
My visit to State House was a constitutional obligation according to the standing rules of Parliament.
There was nothing unusual about that visit since my visit was above board. The event was national, it was not a Zanu PF event.
Mudzuri is reported to be interested in challenging Nelson Chamisa for the presidency of the party at the May Congress. In the interview, Mudzuri said he is ready “to serve my party and my country.” if nominated to contest Chamisa at the party’s congress. He also said that “ready to unite the party. it’s a task that our late icon Morgan Richard Tsvangirai left me when we met for the last time at hospital in South Africa.”
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