Nduduzo Tshuma, Political Editor
MDC Alliance secretary general Mr Douglas Mwonzora left his leader Mr Nelson Chamisa holding his head in shame when he exposed the party’s flawed process in the holding of internal polls that led to the fielding of double candidates in last year’s harmonised elections and by-elections that followed.
Addressing MDC Alliance members during a caucus at MacDonald Hall in Bulawayo’s Mzilikazi suburb this week, Mr Mwonzora said the party’s internal election processes were fraught with corruption.
He also seemed to blame the party’s chairperson at the time, Mr Morgen Komichi, who is now one of the party’s vice presidents, for the chaos that also saw the party fielding double candidates in last year’s polls which were won by Zanu-PF with a resounding two thirds majority in Parliament.
Mr Komichi is an ally of Mr Chamisa.
“I want you to understand that the issue of elections in the MDC is led by the Elections Directorate chaired by the national chairperson and not the secretary general. The national chairperson develops the rules of the elections and if there are any complaints, they go to the national chairperson,” said Mr Mwonzora.
“The issue of elections belongs to the national chairperson of the party whether good or bad. On the issue of national elections, there was corruption. When a candidate was elected, and candidates were selected in primary elections and the rules are that the one who comes first in those polls becomes an automatic candidate. We would see two candidates and I do not know what would have happened because my office only had one candidate.”
Mr Mwonzora also accused some elements within the party of sacrificing him over the chaos that rocked the party’s primary polls for the Cowdray Park by-election that was won by Zanu-PF.
“It’s easy to sacrifice someone for a crime they did not commit,” he said.
Mr Mwonzora said he made consultations with the present chairperson Ms Thabitha Khumalo and former Bulawayo provincial chairperson Mr Gift Banda on the Cowdray Park candidate.
He said because of the initial date of the Nomination Court in January, one name was given without going to primary elections and after its postponement, the party held chaotic primary elections leading to two candidates contesting.
“We were lucky because Zec postponed the Nomination Court. I then spoke to the president and asked what to do. We agreed on holding primary elections. I wrote a letter to Bulawayo to hold primary elections, I have the letter if you want to see it,” said Mr Mwonzora as Mr Chamisa held and shook his head in apparent embarrassment.
Mr Mwonzora said after the chaotic primaries, the party decided that the two candidates submit their names at the Nomination Court but another primary election was to be done before the by-election.
The party subsequently allowed both Ms Nomagugu Mloyi and former councillor Collet Ndlovu to contest on a party ticket.
Mr Mwonzora fell out with Mr Chamisa when he announced that he would challenge his boss at the party’s congress this month.
He was later forced to withdraw his challenge citing irregularities and an uneven playing field that favoured Mr Chamisa.
Mr Mwonzora’s sentiments come at a time Mr Chamisa is facing a revolt from some members of the Bulawayo structures who accuse him of manipulating the provincial congress last month in favour of his desired candidates on the basis of tribe.
On Monday, disgruntled members sprayed graffiti on the walls of the MDC Alliance Bulawayo offices denigrating Mr Chamisa who was in the city for the party’s caucus.