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MDC-T infighting intensifies

by Pamela Shumba
17 Mar 2015 at 11:36hrs | Views
Dorcas Sibanda's house in Paddonhurst had its windows smashed
INFIGHTING within the MDC-T structures in Bulawayo has intensified with rival factions engaged in violent clashes at the weekend.

Bulawayo Central Member of Parliament and acting provincial chairperson Dorcas Sibanda was targeted as the leadership wrangle rages on within the provincial structures.

A group of party members allegedly pounced on Sibanda's house in Paddonhurst and destroyed windows, and left fliers written "The Veterans Activists Association (VAA) is not going to protect you this time. We voted for you thinking that you're one of us, not knowing that you will sell out to Hlalo and VAA. Resign now?

The incident comes barely three days after she was attacked at her house by suspected MDC-T members.

Sibanda confirmed the incident which occurred in the early hours of yesterday.

"I suspect it's the same people who attacked me on Thursday last week. I was away attending my fathers funeral and they came at about 1PM and threw stones, destroying four windows at my house and frightening my children.

"My children have since reported the matter to the police and I hope the culprits will be brought to book," said Sibanda.

She insisted that she was still the party's acting provincial chairperson and described the suspects as hooligans who believed in violence.

"These are hooligans who want to pretend to be politicians. What they should know is that we can't go against the constitution. This will not change even if people come to my house and break windows.

"The national council wants me to be the acting chairperson. If there are people who aren't happy with the decision its unfortunate," added Sibanda.

She said when her children went out to investigate what was going on, they saw people wearing red T-shirts fleeing from the house.

Hlalo declined to comment on the matter, saying the court had dealt with the issue.

Bulawayo provincial police spokesperson Inspector Mandlenkosi Moyo said he had not received a report on the incident

The opposition party's Bulawayo province has been embroiled in a leadership wrangle that saw the suspension of Sibanda recently. She was suspended at a provincial executive

meeting held at the provincial party headquarters for statements she allegedly made at a meeting held two weeks ago.

Sibanda is accused of having said she would run a parallel structure after she was blocked from acting as provincial chairperson.

She was suspended ahead of a visit to the city last week by the party leader Morgan Tsvangirai.

Bulawayo Deputy Mayor Gift Banda, who had been voted as a provincial chairperson in a chaos-riddled poll in the run up to the MDC-T's 2014 congress, was forced to step down from the position following a High Court judgment.

Justice Martin Makonese of the Bulawayo High Court ruled in favour of Banda's rival Matson Hlalo, who argued that Ban da did not qualify to hold a senior post under the party membership rules.

At the time the verdict was issued, the MDC-T had already suspended Hlalo, accusing him of engaging in acts of violence.

Source - chronicle