MDC-Alliance members in the diaspora are crying foul following numerous reports that the party’s leadership has failed to account for most of the donated funds that were meant for voter mobilisation ahead of the 2023 polls.
An MDC-Alliance member who is very close to Nelson CHAMISA told this publication that the donated funds were misappropriated by MDC-Alliance UK Election Agents Fundraising Committee Treasurer, Ben Tsikwa, and other senior members of that party in Harare.
According to the source, MDC-Alliance members in the diaspora were asked to donate money purportedly to: “safeguard the 2023 electoral votes” and cater for the polling agents’ needs such as mobile data, food as well as to mobilise voters to vote for the MDC-Alliance.
“We were asked to donate towards voter mobilisation ahead of the 2023 plebiscite. The donated funds were also meant to safeguard our votes from manipulation and rigging. Over £200 000 was collected from Labour Party members and other well-wishers but we were surprised when Tsikwa announced that only £2 680 had been raised”, said the furious National Executive Committee member.
According to the same source, the generous members in the UK MDC-Alliance included Lenny Banda, Shylett Manyange, Shingirai Mupfupi, Thokozani Maya, Sam Gorogodo, Judith Ngwenya, Irene Manhunzi, Xolile Sithole, Gladys Meck, Beauty Musewe, Edgar Makuni, and Welcome Bhebhe.
“Several members in the UK and Ireland donated towards the initiative. The response to the call for donations was overwhelming and people parted with their hard earned cash in the hope that the money would be put to good use. Lenny Banda is one of those who urged other people to donate towards the struggle”, added the source. The source alleged that a clique from Mbare in particular and Harare in general, had connived with named MDC-Alliance leaders in Harare to loot the donation. The same source further said that members had, on a number of occasions, asked the MDC-Alliance UK South West District chairperson, Edgar Makuni to account for the funds but were not satisfied with his answer. The MDC-Alliance UK South West District Bank Account Number 71866885, had a balance of £2 680 as at the end of October 2021, which implies that the larger portion of the money had been siphoned to personal accounts.
The source added that the abuse of funds had become a cancer within the MDC-Alliance and some members were now reluctant to donate towards party programmes. He added that the MDC-Alliance leadership was treating the party as a cash cow and was not strategizing to be the next government as it was focused on looting funds.
Similar concerns were being expressed regarding the GoFundMe Crowd Funding initiative to raise an estimated US$120 000 for the procurement of an armoured vehicle for Nelson Chamisa. The initiative understated that it has so far raised US$99 000 when in fact more than US$120 000, £70 871 and ZAR11 790 869 had been raised.
Efforts to get a comment from Tsikwa (+44 7403337486) were futile as his mobile phone was not reachable.