Dissension from provinces gives Chamisa headache

by Innocent Mujeri

Information of dissension filtering in from the MDC Alliance provincial structures, where  forced signing of oaths of allegiance exercises have been conducted to establish the loyalty of members is causing sleepless nights for the beleaguered MDC Alliance leader as it reveals his losing grip on power.

Statistics are showing that more and more members are shifting allegiance to Dr Thokozani Khupe who was empowered by the Supreme Court to lead that party on an interim basis until the Extra Ordinary Congress

Chamisa recently directed MDC Alliance provincial chairpersons and administrators to compel members to sign oaths of allegiance, a move that was meant to adulterate his support in the provinces.

A source within the MDC Alliance confided in this publication that Chamisa was having sleepless nights after reports from Mashonaland West and Masvingo Provinces showed that his support base had immensely dwindled.

The same source told this publication that all along, Chamisa had a false belief that the Mashonaland West Provincial executive was in his corner but was surprised when only nine members signed oaths of allegiance at a meeting chaired by Mashonaland West Chairperson, Ralph Magunje.

“Imagine only nine members signed those papers (oaths of allegiance forms) and the rest chose to snub the meeting. Chamisa was not amused with such low numbers and he promised to deal with the defiant Mashonaland West Province,” said the source.

Another contact who attended Magunje’s meeting on 28 May 2020, told this publication that Magunje was also shocked with the low turnout at the meeting.

The same source said the meeting was attended by 11 members and only nine of them signed the allegiance forms.

“Magunje was fuming during the meeting. He clearly pointed out that some members, the likes of Violet Moeketsi (Provincial Woman’s Assembly Chairperson), Edward Kadewere (Provincial Secretary), National Executive Committee member, Steward Garadhi, and others were openly rebelling against Chamisa,” said the source.

The same source said Magunje was not happy with the poor attendance as he wanted to use the meeting to gauge and consolidate Chamisa’s power base in the province. 

It is alleged that he phoned Charlton Hwende after the meeting informing him that the majority of Mashonaland West members might have crossed floor to Thokozani Khupe’s camp.

Meanwhile, another contact in the MDC Alliance said the Chamisa camp was in the process of manipulating the 2014 structures with the intention of undermining the preparation for the Extra Ordinary Congress which is likely to be held in the next two months.

The same contact told this publication that MDC Alliance Director in the Organising Department, Farai Chinobva, sent text messages to all party provincial administrators instructing them to compile a list of all 2014 District Chairpersons. The provincial administrators were instructed to capture names, contact details as well as highlighting if the person was loyal to Chamisa or Khupe.

At the time of publication, this reporter had gleaned an information sheet from Masvingo Province which showed that there are 26 District chairpersons and 15 of them are loyal to Khupe while 11 are for Chamisa.

The same information sheet showed that, of the five District chairpersons in Masvingo District, all of them are for Khupe while in Chiredzi there are four chairpersons and they are evenly distributed between Khupe and Chamisa.

In Zaka, three chairpersons are for Khupe while, one is for Chamisa. Gutu and Bikita have eight District chairpersons but five are for Chamisa while three are for Khupe.

All three Chivi District Chairpersons have declared loyalty to Chamisa while, all two Mwenezi Chairpersons are aligned to Khupe.

It is alleged that the information from Masvingo has send shockwaves within the Chamisa camp as the trend is likely to replicate in other provinces which are yet to submit their information.

A contact within the MDC Alliance said plans are now underway to dangle US dollars to all 2014 District chairpersons to declare loyalty to Chamisa and eventually snub the intended Extra Ordinary Congress. Amos Chibaya has been tasked with the recruitment of all 2014 District chairpersons to Chamisa’s camp.

Analyst Nobleman Runyanga said the problems that Chamisa is facing are well captured by a statement made by that party former National Chairperson Lovemore Moyo who said on his resignation “the MDC has lost its direction after the appointment of Advocate Nelson Chamisa as president following the death of Mr Morgan Tsvangirai”.

Since the Supreme Court ruling, several MDC legislators have crossed floor to Khupe’s faction in a bid to save their political careers.