MDC-T is battling to unite its deeply divided supporters since its divisive elective congress held in the capital in December last year, a senior party official has said, amid fears the rift would cost the opposition party in the 2023 polls.
Douglas Mwonzora was elected president of the party beating the then acting president Thokozani Khupe, Morgan Komichi and Elias Mudzuri. Khupe claimed the elections were rigged.
There are sentiments suggesting there are two camps in the party with a huge chunk of supporters loyal to Mwonzora while Khupe also commands an equally larger share of supporters.
The party’s national chairman, Komichi, told Business Times this week that the political formation’s leadership should work on narrowing the party’s deep partisan divisions that emerged after the elections in December.
Failure to do so, Komichi said, was likely to cost the party in the forthcoming elections.
“We are calling for unity in the party and there is no need for acrimony as the elections were held and we elected a new leadership and we want to rally behind them fully. We have a battle in our hands to mobilise support amongst the public and get ready for the general elections in 2023. We have no option but to do so, otherwise we risk losing the elections heavily in 2023,” Komichi said.
It is also understood that the MDC-T party derives the bulk of its support from frustrated supporters of the MDC-Alliance led by Nelson Chamisa.
Several analysts say the MDC-T has been struggling to get the recognition of many as it was deemed to be one of the projects of the ruling party ZANU-PF as part of its efforts to dilute Chamisa’s political clout.
In its fight for the control of the opposition party with Chamisa, the Mwonzora-led MDC-T party was granted the right to occupy the party’s headquarters at the Harvest House, which was previously occupied by Chamisa, whom the Supreme Court declared was not a bona fide leader of the opposition party.
The MDC-T went on to recall several members of Parliament and councillors who remained loyal to Chamisa.
The party also received funds, which were previously channelled to the Chamisa-led MDC-Alliance, under the Political Finance Act, from the Treasury.