MDC Masvingo provincial chairperson, James Gumbi and other senior members of his executive have this afternoon locked themselves in the party’s offices in fear of being attacked by rowdy youths that were violently protesting alleged attempts to rig the selection of five members who will be deployed to the party’s national executive.
Many youths and other agitated party members besieged the party’s provincial headquarters at 32 Mukwa Street, Rhodene, singing songs that denounce the provincial leadership.
Serious violence broke out after the Masvingo Urban youth wing began to conduct an accreditation exercise that others declared illegal.
Rivals said only the party’s vice president Lynette Karenyi-Kore, who by the time of writing had not yet arrived to preside over the elections, had the right to run the accreditation exercise.
The contested accreditation exercise disenfranchised some districts including Chivi North and Chiredzi West, in what many claimed was an attempt by Gumbi to victimise district structures perceived to be loyal to his rival Tongai Matutu.
One youth had his foot stuck under the heavy gate as people stampeded in the violence, and he pitifully wailed in pain.
Other people engaged in fist fights and scaled the security wall to force their way into the accreditation venue.