HARARE – Following the death of former Movement for Democratic Change (MDC-T) leader, Morgan Tsvangirai yesterday, the opposition party has appointed Nelson Chamisa, as party’s numero uno for the next 12 months albeit on an acting basis.
Tsvangirai succumbed to colon cancer last night at a South African hospital and his body will be flown to Zimbabwe at a date to be announced.
However, it is the appointment of his former deputy deputy, Chamisa, that has taken the limelight, in the midst of a dark time, in the opposition camp.
There had been a lot of conflicting reports from the MDC-T with regards to the the actual acting president.
Last week, presidential spokesperson, Luke Tamborinyoka, announced that the late Tsvangirai had appointed the now acting president, only for the other faction, led by Mudzuri, to dismiss the appointment as untrue.
Chamisa comes to the helm of a party divided and tangled in factional wars which are threatening to derail the party and the MDC Alliance’s preparations for the upcoming elections.
He , Chamisa, is engrossed in a factional war with the party’s two Vice Presidents, Thokozani Khupe and Elias Mudzuri, who were all contemptuous by their absence when the MDC-T Standings Committee convened today.
In his inaugural address as the new boss , Chamisa said the party is divided but acknowledged “cracks” which are existing with the once formidable opposition party.
“We are a party that is united and of course we have a few squabbles that are within the party but those will be dealt with. We are here to safeguard our founder’s legacy and we are determined to win the election in his honor,” said Chamisa.
Since the formation of the MDC in 1999, Tsvangirai never won an outright election, be the country’s number one civilian.
The closest that he was to power, was in 2008, when he won by 49% to Robert Mugabe’s 43% hence failing to garner enough votes to win the election.
The result prompted a re-run , which was marred by serious cases of violence against Tsvangirai’s supporters.
Now Chamisa has promised to do in three months or so, what Tsvangirai failed to do in 19 years.
Confirming the appointment of Chamisa, MDC-T Deputy Organizing Secretary Morgan Komichi said Chamisa emerged as the “outright replacement” for Tsvangirai and would be acting in that capacity for the 12 months.
“The Standing committee,compromised of 190 out of the 250 members, convened and agreed that Vice President Chamisa will replaced our departed leader.
“His main task is to win the election in honor of our former president and he is tasked with restoring the legacy left by Tsvangirai,” said Komichi.
But can Chamisa steer the rocking ship? Can he be the man to take MDC-T to the throne ? It remains to be seen. – 263Chat