The opposition MDC is in turmoil in the Midlands province after the provincial executive unilaterally chose members who will be seconded to the party’s highest decision-making body, the national executive council.
Party structures from all the districts convened in Gweru over the weekend to choose the five representatives.
The process was set to be presided over by MDC women’s assembly chairperson, Paurina Mpariwa.
However, instead of holding the elections, provincial chairperson Josiah Makombe allegedly proposed his own list of five, asked someone to second them and thereafter declared the process completed.
The move left party members seething with anger. A Newsday source who was in attendance had this to say:
What happened was totally unfair and undemocratic. We went there for elections, only for names to be imposed on us. It’s a sad chapter for the MDC.
The development was confirmed by Takavafira Zhou, MDC Midlands provincial spokesperson. He said:
There were challenges over names that were left out in spite of submitting applications (to contest the posts).
These concerns were brought to the attention of the presiding officers, who in turn will make a ruling in the best interest of nurturing and protecting our democratic ethos so that our collective responsibility would add value to the party.
According to Newsday, the five candidates “smuggled” by the provincial chair, who is also Gweru Mayor, Josiah Makombe were;
Gweru Urban MP Brian Dube, proportional representation MP Emma Muzondiwa, immediate past MDC Midlands South chairperson Francisco Masendeke, Beatina Majoni and Cephas Zimuti.