March 02, 2018 / comments : 0
|MDC-T president Nelson Chamisa|
BY JAMES MUONWA
It is now official that the 2018 presidential race would pit Zanu PF candidate Emmerson Mnangagwa and MDC-T's Nelson Chamisa.
This follows MDC national council' endorsement of youthful Nelson Chamisa as the opposition party's substantive leader, setting the ball rolling for the 40-year-old politician's electoral campaign against main contender, Mnangagwa, who is completing ex-president Robert Mugabe's term following his ouster last November through a military 'coup'.
The development was confirmed Thursday during a press conference held at the MDC Headquarters in Harare.
Addressing journalists after the national council meeting, MDC deputy national chairperson, Morgan Komichi told journalists the national council had sat as congress to elevate Chamisa, who was co-vice presidents alongside Thokozane Khupe and Elias Mudzuri, to the position of substantive leader until 2019 when all other party positions would be contested for.
"That in line with Article 18 as read together with Article 9.2.1 of the party constitution, the party through the national council has resolved that Honourable Nelson Chamisa is confirmed as the party's substantive leader and the party's presidential candidate for 2018," said Komichi.
The party also issued a 7-day ultimatum to Khupe, national chairperson, Lovemore Moyo and organising secretary Abednigo Bhebhe to engage Chamisa or face expulsion.
MDC spokesperson and lawyer, Obert Gutu was suspended from the party following his recent rants that he was quitting the formation due to its violent nature, but quickly made a somersault.
Komichi further read the council resolutions; "That the party has given seven days for engagement processes to take place with senior leaders VP Khupe, national chairperson Lovemore Moyo and organising secretary Abednigo Bhebhe after which the party has mandated the leadership to take the necessary action by operation of law.
"That party spokesperson Obert Gutu is suspended pending internal disciplinary processes and in the meantime deputy spokesperson Honourable Thabitha Khumalo becomes the acting party spokesperson."
Fielding questions from journalists, Chamisa defended the party's move to forgo an extraordinary congress which would have chosen a substantive leader, arguing the development was within the confines of the MDC constitution.
"These are the leaders, these are the owners of the party," said Chamisa.
The national council meeting was held amid a tense atmosphere as MDC youths sang and danced outside the party offices, extolling Chamisa's leadership while castigating the other leaders, Khupe and Mudzuri, who snubbed the event.
Komichi also announced the party had named Harvest House, the party's head office to Morgan Richard Tsvangirai House, in honour of their late hero.
There was a leadership battle in the MDC over who succeeds Morgan Tsvangirai, who died of colon cancer in a South African hospital on 14 February.
The feud heightened at the burial of the opposition political icon, where Khupe, secretary general Douglas Mwonzora and Bhebhe were beaten up by party buffoons, who threatened to torch a hut in which they had sought refuge.-TOP NEWS.
Zimbabwe News Anchor
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