MDC-T vice-president Thokozani Khupe yesterday insisted that she does not recognise Nelson Chamisa as party president because the organ that elected him does not have the power to do so.
Chamisa was elected by the national executive and the national council as the substantive party president last week.
Khupe did not attend that meeting. She also scoffed at the seven-day ultimatum that the council gave her to reconcile or quit.
“The national council cannot give me an ultimatum. It does not have the power to do that. I can only be given an ultimatum by congress. The national council does not and has no power to elect leaders,” she was quoted by Newsday as saying.
“I was elected at congress in 2014 along with our late leader, Morgan Tsvangirai. That means, in his absence, I should be acting president. Chamisa and Mudzuri were appointed by president Tsvangirai.”
The paper said Khupe would not have a problem with Chamisa if he had been elected by congress.
“The question is why they are afraid of congress if they believe that they are so popular. We must stick to the values and principles that define the MDC. We are of the belief that our colleagues have deviated from the character and culture that defines the MDC, that of social democracy and non-violence, the values of non-discrimination on ethnic and gender.
“The so-called national council meetings that are being bandied about were un-procedural and I do not recognise any of their resolutions. Constitutionally I am the acting president of the MDC-T.”
Chamisa yesterday tried to play down his differences with Khupe tweeting: “VP Khupe is more than a VP; she’s a Cde, a sister and a friend to our MDC-T family. We’ve hoped, fought and cried together in pursuit of freedom.& a better Zimbabwe. What binds us together is far greater than the little that seeks to set us apart.”