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5 gun for MDC Bulawayo chairperson's post

by Staff reporter
15 Mar 2019 at 05:57hrs | Views
FIVE MDC Alliance members are reportedly jostling for the Bulawayo provincial chairmanship position as the incumbent, Mr Gift Banda, is eyeing a national executive post during the party's Congress to be held in May.

Party insiders said Nketa Member of Parliament; Mr Phelela Masuku, Makokoba MP James Sithole, former Makokoba Senator Mr Matson Hlalo, Ward 28 aspiring councillor Mr Collet Ndlovu and businessman Mr Sonny Phiri are all targeting the party's provincial top post.

The opposition party is expected to hold provincial congresses later this month and in April ahead of the national congress to be held from May 24 to 26.

Fissures are already emerging in the MDC Alliance as factions' angle for the party's control.

One of the camps is backing Mr Nelson Chamisa to lead the party while another is pushing for secretary general, Mr Douglas Mwonzora, to be the party's president. Party sources yesterday said while much attention has been on the presidential race, jostling was intense within the grassroots structures.

"As it stands, there are two camps in the party seriously angling to control structures as we head towards the national congress. Both camps are trying to control provincial structures because they know that national leaders are elected by the provincial structures. In Bulawayo, there is Banda's camp which is pushing for Mr Masuku to be the provincial chairman.

"On the other side, the national chairperson Ms Thabitha Khumalo's camp seems to be undecided on who should be their candidate for the chairmanship. Her camp was pushing for Collet but there are others who want Hlalo or Sonny Phiri," said the source.

The source said it was not clear which camp was advancing Mr Sithole's name.

Mr Phiri confirmed that some party members have approached him requesting that he stands for the chairman's post. He said he was willing to contest as politics is about serving the people.

Mr Phiri said: "If this is what the people are saying, they want to me serve them, thank you."  Mr Masuku and Mr Sithole said it was too early for them to speak on the issue.

Mr Ndlovu, who is the party's candidate in the Ward 28 council by-election to be held on March 30, said at the moment the party has not dissolved the provincial structures, hence it would be improper for him to declare his interests. He added that should there be an opportunity he would be happy to challenge for the chairmanship.

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Source - chronicle

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