THE MDC Renewal Team yesterday announced that it had converged with the United Movement for Democracy (UMD) led by exiled businessman Mutumwa Mawere to form a formidable grand coalition of opposition parties ahead of the 2018 elections.

Renewal Team spokesperson Jacob Mafume told party members in Mutare that the deal was concluded last Friday, adding that negotiations with other opposition parties were still on course.

The Renewal Team broke ranks with the mainstream MDC-T led by Morgan Tsvangirai a few months ago following irreconcilable differences centred on leadership style.

"It's now the party's position that we integrate all efforts with the Renewal Team because what we stood for in the last elections is exactly the same with what they [UMD] are standing for, therefore, there is no reason to divide the effort," Mafume said.

Mafume said Mawere was now part of a broad committee working towards combining opposition parties into a single coalition.


However, Mawere could not be reached for confirmation.

Addressing about 500 party provincial leaders, Renewal Team interim secretary-general Tendai Biti said his party was working on an economic blueprint to rescue the economy. The former Finance minister also took a swipe at Sadc for bestowing the regional bloc's chairmanship of President Robert Mugabe, saying the Zanu PF leader's credibility was tainted.

"What example are you setting when you make Mugabe chairman of Sadc?" Biti, who claimed Mugabe's credibility does not allow him to take over the post, said.

"We are going to send a delegation to Victoria Falls which will present a document to Sadc leaders with the reforms that we want as Zimbabwe."




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