Chamisa sticks to his guns

Chamisa sticks to his guns
Published: 25 April 2019
THERE are murmurs of discontent among MDC party members here after the just-ended Bulawayo provincial congress ushered in a leadership dominated by members from one tribe.

At the provincial congress, Makokoba legislator James Sithole was elected the party's provincial chair, beating Nketa Member of Parliament Phelela Masuku.

He takes over from Gift Banda. Other members of the provincial executive include Felix Mhaka (vice chair); Ernest Rafamoyo (secretary); a Taranhike (deputy secretary); Helen Zviviri (organiser); Collet Ndhlovu (deputy organiser); Sonny Phiri (treasurer); Swithen Chiworodza and Gladys Mathe.

In the youth assembly, the province is chaired by Tinashe Kambarami with Memory Ndlovu coming in as his deputy.

The other members are Raphael Sibanda, Praise Khumalo, Donaldson Mabutho, a Garikai, Tsitsi Mutserekwi, Ben Hlatshwayo, Philip Mudhoni, Masiza Ndlovu, Sikhuphukile Dube, Anny Chitongo.

Sentiment in the MDC is that there is no tribal balancing in the provincial leadership, which is not in keeping with what the party stands for and the national constitution.

But contacted for comment, party spokesperson Jacob Mafume said while there are choruses of disapproval in the province they have not received any formal complaint.

"We have a cosmopolitan executive that was elected, women executive, youth executive and main wing executive…and there are all-in-all 30 people that were selected.

"In all those people there is a health balance of gender, tribe and mixed nationalities - people of Malawian origin, with a composition quite cosmopolitan benefiting a city of a  status of Bulawayo for there would be a variety of people in its executive from many backgrounds and origins," Mafume told the Daily News.

On allegations of vote rigging, Mafume said the party was also yet to receive any complaints.

"We have not received any formal complaints on allegations of rigging; we have a channel for grievances and a period of (lodging) grievances. What we have are innuendos, aspersions, Mandurian whispers and these are not originating from our members.

"Remember these are congressional members; they are not your ordinary members - they know how to complain at the party. They know how to set around complaining if they have been rigged, they would not take it lying down if anyone rigged or manipulated the election," he added.

Mafume said the fact that the formal complaint channels have not been utilised means those who lost have accepted the results ahead of the party's national congress set for next month.
Tribalism has remained a thorn in the flesh for the MDC in Bulawayo ever since it was formed.

The scourge usually rears its ugly head during provincial elections.

Late last year, deputy mayor Tinashe Kambarami and councillor Arnold Batirai survived a push to get them ousted on the basis that they were outsiders.

At some point a faction led by party returnee Matson Hlalo fought running battles with that of former provincial chair Gorden Moyo.

After Moyo left, Hlalo took up matters again with Banda after he lost the provincial election in controversial ways.

Hlalo was later expelled after he took the matter to High court seeking the nullification of the election results.
- dailynews
Tags: Chamisa,