Chamisa sets Vice Presidency as condition for coalition


Harare – The MDC Alliance has dismissed reports that its President Nelson Chamisa is seeking to become Prime Minister in an inclusive government, as reported by state media.

In an interview on Monday MDC-T spokesperson Tabitha Khumalo said reports in the state owned newspaper were merely a tactic by the ruling Zanu PF party.

“The sad part about the politics of Zimbabwe is that for some unknown reason, they think that negotiations are done in public.

“We do not rely on newspapers and the Zanu PF leader ( E.D. Mnangagwa) knows our channels of communication.”

However, the Mail and Telegraph understands that Chamisa has told emissaries that he wants six cabinet positions as well as the creation of a third vice presidency for him, as conditions for a coalition government with the ruling Zanu PF.

MDC Alliance has no interest in leader of opposition post

Khumalo said her party leader has never engaged anyone for negotiations. She also said the announcement of the creation of a parliamentary position for the leader of the opposition held no interest for MDC Alliance.

 “Zanu PF has no right to downgrade our president to a legislature and over and above that we won this election, so as far as we are concerned it is a non-event,” she said.

She also criticised Mnangagwa for making the announcement of the leader of the opposition position without direct dialogue with Chamisa.

“That is poor management of his (Mnangagwa’s) affairs because honestly if that is what he wanted, you need to negotiate with the president before you make a decision, we were never consulted,” she said.

Khumalo said the current economic climate reflected illegitimacy of the 2018 harmonised elections.

“When a country goes to an election the results are going to be confirmed by the service and delivery of goods and services within the country.

So I am sure you are aware that when Mnangagwa came in everything went sliding, the bond note has gone haywire, as I am speaking today US$100 equals to 300 bond notes and we have horrible fuel queues,” she said.

Chamisa’s demands

While the MDC Alliance leadership is dismissing reports with regards to negotiations for an inclusive government sources said Chamisa has already demanded six cabinet positions and the creation of the third vice presidency in government.

“He (Chamisa) wants to be the third vice president while his party is given six cabinet positions which should include ministry of Finance, Home Affairs, Local government and three other ministries to balance the power distribution,” said the source.

Senior government sources said Mnangagwa has, however, declined to grant Chamisa’s demands saying he won the elections and if the opposition is not co-operating then Zanu PF can go it alone.

“Mnangagwa will not hand over powerful cabinet posts to the opposition. He won the elections and has more than two thirds majority in parliament so Zanu PF can still soldier on alone,” said the source.

Protests are the only way forward for the opposition party

Khumalo said the alliance has already taken steps towards nationwide demonstrations, as they still believed the 2018 harmonised elections were rigged.

“As the MDC we have to defend the people’s vote as I speak we have been going all over Zimbabwe meeting our structures in preparation for a demonstration demanding our vote,” she said.

Khumalo said that reports of division within the party were of no concern and described the MDC Alliance as “intact” and “on course.”

Divisions rock MDC Alliance

Political analysts say rifts within the MDC leadership are clear for all to see.

MDC sources say Chamisa will soon hold an emergency meeting with the intent to sack the party Secretary General Douglas Mwonzora. According to the sources, this move would apparently grant him greater control over the party ahead of the 2019 congress.

Political analyst Goodwell Zinyama said there has been a rift between Chamisa and Mwozora for quite some time.

“This has been there since the death of Morgan Tsvangirai and this dates back when they had their congress when Chamisa did not win the secretary general post so that is where it all started Mwonzora has always been more popular within the MDC structures than Chamisa,” he said.

Zinyama said the MDC Alliance’s only choice was to mobilize its supporters to put pressure on Zanu PF.

“They are saying they are going to make everything ungovernable for Mnangagwa. That is their only option, [to] go into the streets, they have even been circulating some messages saying everything was supposed to be closed today in the (Central Business District), kombis must not travel but they continued and only some of the shops were closed,” he said.

Zinyama said the alliance’s congress next year would possibly result in the removal of Nelson Chamisa as party president.

“The real MDC is within the urban populace and it means that if they go to congress obviously Mwonzora has more power over the structures of MDC,” he said.

He noted that Chamisa’s fast rise to power in the MDC did not sit well with many within the party.

“He did not come from the roots of the party, he did not come from there, it was something he had taken from the top. It was not from the ground structure.

“The grassroots structure respects people like Mwonzora. They respect people like (Elias) Mudzuri and they are on one side. In order to ringfence his position Chamisa had to bring in people like (Welshman) Ncube and (Tendai) Biti, who are not popular within the ranks of the MDC-T which was led by Tsvangirai,” he said.



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