Zvamaida Murwira and Nokutenda Chiyangwa, Harare Bureau
The MDC Alliance is becoming increasingly wobbly, as coalition partners are threatening to pull out, accusing their chairperson Mr Nelson Chamisa of being big-headed and imposing MDC-T candidates in 19 constituencies initially reserved for the other parties.
The MDC Alliance is made up of seven political parties — MDC-T, which is led by Mr Chamisa; PDP (Mr Tendai Biti); MDC (Professor Welshman Ncube); Transform Zimbabwe (Mr Jacob Ngarivhume); Zanu Ndonga (Mr Denford Musiyarira); Multi-Racial Christian Democratic Party (Mr Mathias Guchutu) and Zimbabwe People First (Mr Agrippa Mutambara).
Transform Zimbabwe president Mr Jacob Ngarivhume yesterday said he was unhappy with the MDC-T for fielding candidates in constituencies reserved for his party.
It is believed that other political parties that are part of the pact are actively reviewing their position in the alliance, as they accuse Mr Chamisa of bullying them.
Addressing journalists in the capital yesterday, Mr Ngarivhume said his party convened a congress last weekend, where several delegates expressed great exception with Mr Chamisa’s decision to “invade” their constituencies, thus, undermining the spirit of the coalition.
“Delegates at our congress from various provinces brought a lot of complaints in relation to the alliance and one that topped them was the compatibility of the alliance,” he said.
“There is disregard of the letter and spirit of the alliance agreement by the MDC-T through appointing candidates in constituencies earmarked for alliance partners.”
Mr Ngarivhume said the party had asked the delegates to submit evidence that the MDC-T was fielding candidates and they had since forwarded their complaints to the alliance.
“We are very firm and solid in terms of what we believe and what we think must be done,” said Mr Ngarivhume.
He said the congress of the party drew more than 2 000 delegates.
“The strength of an alliance is not determined by the number of people you bring at rallies, but the value you bring,” said Mr Ngarivhume.
“We need each other. We are not less partners. We started the alliance with the late MDC-T president Morgan Tsvangirai.”
When contacted for comment, MDC-T deputy national chairperson Mr Morgan Komichi dismissed assertions by Mr Ngarivhume, saying his party stood guided by what they had agreed.
“I think Mr Ngarivhume and other partners are confusing an interest that would have been shown by our members in respect of those constituencies,” he said.
“In some instances, some of our members might feel that they could do better than a member of the alliance and would submit their curriculum vitaes in respect of those constituencies, but at the end of the day, it is the national election directorate with the final say.”
Mr Komichi slammed Mr Ngarivhume for rushing to the media instead of bringing grievances to the organs of the Alliance.
But Mr Ngarivhume insisted that they had evidence showing that the MDC-T was bent on breaching the agreement they entered into with the other parties.
He said their membership from across the province had compiled the evidence and presented it to the Alliance.