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Tsvangarai declares preferred successor

by Staff Reporter
08 Jan 2018 at 20:23hrs | Views
Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai has given a hint of his proffered successor as Nelson Chamisa whom he appointed together with Elias Mudzuri as deputies last year.

Tsvangirai gave the youthful politician the crucial task of leading the party's selection process of parliamentary and council candidates for this year's crunch elections.

This is apart from Tsvangirai having also significantly chosen Chamisa to stand in for him and to handle all the party's business within the MDC Alliance - as the former prime minister in the government of national unity valiantly battles colon cancer.

The promising alliance is anchored around the spirit of the original Movement for Democratic Change ahead of this year's crucial polls, supported by a number of other fringe opposition parties.

But both insiders and political analysts who spoke to the Daily News at the weekend sounded a word of caution that any further moves by Tsvangirai to affirm Chamisa further at the expense of his other two deputies - Thokozani Khupe and Elias Mudzuri - could rip the MDC apart.

Tsvangirai is frequently out of the country receiving treatment for his illness, which has limited his public appearances and his ability to directly steer his party.

Well-placed sources revealed yesterday that Tsvangirai had called Chamisa to his residence before his latest departure to South Africa on Friday for his treatment, to appoint him to lead the MDC's selection of its candidates for the fast-approaching harmonised elections this year.

This was apparently done in the absence of both Khupe and Mudzuri - with the former having previously and vociferously voiced her concern over the manner in which Tsvangirai and the MDC have handled the formation of the Alliance.

MDC secretary-general Douglas Mwonzora played down fears of looming leadership problems within the party, while confirming that party executive members would soon be meeting with Chamisa over the matter.

"We are going to meet with VP Chamisa on Tuesday to deliberate on the issue of candidates' selection.

"The selection will be done according to the key MDC statutes and after that meeting with the VP, we will convene a national directorate meeting that will be chaired by the national chairperson Lovemore Moyo to approve the selected candidates," Mwonzora told the Daily News.

MDC Alliance spokesperson Welshman Ncube also confirmed to the Daily News yesterday that Chamisa would lead Tsvangirai's campaign rallies ahead of the elections.

"If we are going to have MDC Alliance rallies Chamisa is going to represent Tsvangirai," Ncube said adding that it is not a new development because "in the last three months Chamisa was representing Tsvangirai at MDC Alliance principal meetings".

Ncube also told the Daily News that Tsvangirai had instructed Chamisa to oversee the selection of his MDC party's parliamentary and council elections candidates.

He further revealed that Tsvangirai had also insisted on Chamisa being present at a meeting that he had had with the former PM before the latter departed for his medical checkup in Johannesburg.

"I had a meeting with president Tsvangirai. He said he needed a few weeks to focus on his treatment and during my meeting with him he then said it was important for Chamisa to be there.

"I then called Chamisa and he came. Tsvangirai then told me that he had assigned Chamisa as his representative in the Alliance.

"We agreed that all parties in the MDC Alliance should start their candidate selection processes to represent the Alliance in the next election … the selection of MDC candidates should be completed by February," Ncube said.

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