MDC-T national chairman, Morgen Komichi refused to support the controversial amendments to the constitution despite pressure from the party’s president Douglas Mwonzora to support them.
The MDC-T reportedly coaxed its Senators into voting with Zanu-PF to pass the amendments that will see President Emmerson Mnangagwa single-handedly picking the chief justice, deputy chief justice and the judge president.
When he was secretary-general of the original MDC-T, Mwonzora was one of the biggest critics of the proposed amendments that were first proposed five years ago.
However, following his fallout with the popular MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa, Mwonzora have pursued a policy of “rational disputation” a euphemism for collaboration with Zanu PF.
The Standard reports that the MDC-T voted with Zanu PF to pass the amendments in the hope that the ruling party will return the favour by backing it in its battles with the mainstream MDC Alliance.
The publication reported MDC-T Senators as saying that the government was mulling further amendments to the constitution that will include suspending by-elections further and raising the age limit for presidential candidates from 40 to 50.
Zanu-PF is reportedly pushing to raise the age limit for presidential candidates to specifically target Chamisa, who polled over 40 per cent in the disputed 2018 presidential poll.
Speaking to The Standard on Saturday, Komichi said he was against changes to the constitution to benefit an individual. He said:
The national constitution needs to be protected from arbitrary amendments because it will do away with what the people actually voted for.
The people of Zimbabwe voted for the current national constitution.
It was the document they contributed to during Copac (Constitution Parliamentary Committee) times so for Parliament to then sit and make amendments without consulting them, is unfair.
We don’t want to amend the constitution to suit certain individuals.
Meanwhile, Mwonzora’s spokesperson Lloyd Damba refuted allegations that MDC-T had struck a deal with Zanu-PF on the constitutional amendments.