President Mugabe called Thokozani Khupe to Blue Roof as Tsvangirai lay on his death bed. It is understood that he offered MDC Vice President Thokozani Khupe a spot as one of the vice presidents in the outfit that he was planning – now known as New Patriotic Front.
The Sunday Times of South Africa reports that Mugabe called Khupe to his Blue Roof residence to discuss the offer. Our further investigations indicate that Mugabe put Jonathan Moyo on the phone too as they sought to find a common ground.
Mugabe then dispatched emissaries to speak with Khupe in South Africa during the so-called Coalition workshop in February this year. It is unknown whether Khupe agreed to work with Mugabe at the time. What is known is that there were two meetings with Mugabe’s emissaries in South Africa where the modalities of working together was being worked out.
At the time it was becoming apparent that Tsvangirai was not going to survive the cancer. Khupe also had a tentative memorandum with Joice Mujuru to work together in the event that she (Khupe) assumed the presidency of MDC.
Khupe has been vehemently opposed to the MDC Alliance that Tsvangirai forged with Tendai Biti and Welshman Ncube. Under the Alliance agreement, Ncube’s MDC would be allowed to choose the bulk of candidates to contest the parliamentary seats in Matebeleland.
This did not go down well with Khupe who felt that Tsvangirai was sacrificing her on the altar for little benefit. She then boycotted meetings with Tsvangirai for more than a year. By the time Tsvangirai died, Khupe had snubbed four meeting requests from Tsvangirai to iron out their differences.
A power struggle ensued at Tsvangirai’s death with Khupe, Mudzuri and Chamisa claiming to be the legitimate leaders of MDC. Chamisa then called a National Council meeting that endorsed him as Acting President and 2018 Presidential candidate for MDC.
Khupe has withdrawn to Bulawayo – her perceived stronghold where she is mounting resistance against Chamisa presidency. She is expected to launch a splinter party in the next few days. It is not yet certain if Khupe’s party will join with Mugabe’s New Patriotic Front.