- Published on 05 May 2014
- Written by Newsday
BEFORE the dust caused by the recent fierce boardroom fights in the MDC-T has settled down, the splinter group led by axed party secretary-general Tendai Biti has hit the road campaigning and telling its supporters that a new party will be unveiled soon.
Addressing a campaign rally attended by over 100 supporters in Mutare on Saturday at the party's provincial headquarters, Biti blasted party leader Morgan Tsvangirai for privatising the MDC-T.
"This movement, the renewal movement, is in its formative stages. We are in that transition where we have to hold on to the name MDC for certain strategic reasons," Biti said.
"But let no one, let no man or woman doubt that we are going to have our own name, our own symbols, own colour. But we pledge to work with others. We pledge to work with other real democrats, churches, civil society and other political parties"
He said the MDC-T had failed to offer solutions to the Zimbabwean crisis. The former Finance minister also said Zimbabwe should be put under the curatorship of Sadc because the current government would not be able to break the current political and economic crisis.
Notable people at the rally were former Makoni South MP Pishai Muchauraya, Patrick Sagandira and former Mutare mayor Brian James.
He also accused Tsvangirai of turning down expert advice last year when he was urged not to participate in the harmonised elections as it was apparent that he was going to lose by a wide margin.
"You cannot do the same thing over and over again and expect a different result. Elections were rigged and it needs sharp brains to see how Zanu PF rigged elections," Biti said.
"What we are doing is to create a new paradigm, we have to create a new vision. The time for personalised politics is over. The time for sloganeering your way to State House is over. The time for singing your way to State House is over. You have to create a new narrative. You have to create a new discourse, a new vision and new paradigm."
Tsvangirai — who has a strong base of supporters and the ability to bring out his supporters — was a beneficiary of Biti's low turnout as he addressed a bumper crowd in Epworth yesterday, dwarfing the numbers at his nemesis's rally.
Jacob Mafume, the Biti faction spokesperson, said they were meeting structures from selected districts and provinces.
"It went on well. We will be doing rallies eventually and they will be public. It was one among many. It was one that TB (Tendai Biti) visited. We need a different approach to rally tourism. Once that's done, we move to the next step," Mafume said.
Mafume said they were holding meetings countrywide and yesterday faction leaders met structures in Chinhoyi and Matabeleland South.
"We are basically having conversations with structures about what has happened, get their feedback to allay their fears about the reported recall of MPs," Mafume said.
He said the ongoing consultations were not rallies, and alleged that the Tsvangirai faction had misled the people that it was a rally and claimed it was an "agenda setting for the media."