MDC-T’s ongoing purge of officials opposed to party leader Mr Morgan Tsvangirai again turned nasty yesterday as violence broke out at Harvest House in a meeting called to suspend Chitungwiza provincial chairperson and Zengeza East National Assembly legislator, Mr Alexio Musundire.
Sources say provincial secretary Mr Chari Parirenyatwa and party youths were shoved, punched and kicked by hooligans at MDC-T’s headquarters in Harare.
“Chari was eventually consoled by Tsvangirai’s aides who took him to his car. The aides had driven to Harvest House to stop the meeting, probably to allow all these issues to be addressed at (today’s) extraordinary national executive council meeting that has been called. No agenda has been furnished to us as members,” said a source.
Last week, MDC-T Harare North youth secretary for information Ms Angela Hwanyanya was allegedly attacked at Harvest House by drunk party youths. Before that, deputy treasurer Mr Elton Mangoma and youth leader Mr Promise Mkwanazi were also allegedly assaulted in Mr Tsvangirai’s presence. Secretary-general Mr Tendai Biti and Solomon Madzore narrowly escaped that attack.
The purge of the ranks has seen two distinct camps emerging amid indications the beleaguered opposition is headed for a split.
Suspensions of provincial leaders opposed to Mr Tsvangirai are understood to have been halted following realisation that the purge is depleting the executive. Some officials in Chitungwiza called yesterday’s meeting to dissolve the Musundire-led executive and install party secretary for mines Mr Fortune Mangwiro in his stead.
The meeting was aborted when violence erupted. Party executives in Matabeleland North and South, Bulawayo, Chitungwiza, Masvingo Mashonaland West and Manicaland have either been suspended or are facing the chop.
MDC-T spokesperson Mr Douglas Mwonzora denied there was violence at yesterday’s meeting.
“The meeting of the provincial executive of Chitungwiza was ordered to be conducted on Friday instead of today. This is because the organising secretary (Mr Nelson Chamisa) and the organising committee had not been informed of the meeting as was required by the regulations.
“It is not true that the MDC is purging anybody. All those individuals where a vote of no-confidence has been passed are being reviewed by leadership on a case-by-case basis,” said Mr Mwonzora.
“All those affected people are urged to approach the organising secretary who is going to bring this issue to the national standing committee and the national executive.” herald