Acting MDC president Thokozani Khupe has struck, recalling four Members of Parliament elected on the MDC Alliance ticket, as the battle to control the heart and soul of the opposition continues.
Douglas Mwonzora drew first blood, recalling MDC Alliance secretary general and Kuwadzana legislator Chalton Hwende, Tabitha Khumalo (proportional representation legislator), chief whip Prosper Mutseyami (Chikanga Dangamvura MP) and Midlands senator Lillian Timveous.
The four came into Parliament under an MDC Alliance in 2018, but strangely, the reasons that were given for their removal in Parliament by both the Speaker of the National Assembly Jacob Mudenda and Senate President Mabel Chinomona for their recall was that they were members of the MDC-T.
Already, MDC-T is represented in Parliament.
Speaker of Parliament Jacob Mudenda said the MDC-T had written to Parliament on April 3 2020 using section 129(1)(k) of the constitution, which stipulates that if a person has ceased to be a member of the political party that brought them into Parliament, then the political party can recall them through writing to the Speaker or the Senate President.
“Pursuant to the above, I, therefore, inform the house that vacancies have arisen by operation of the law and the necessary administrative measures will be taken to inform the President and the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission,” he said.
Justice Minister Ziyambi Ziyambi immediately adjourned Parliament to quash any resistance from the opposition MPs who were interjecting.
Hwende and Mutseyami did not resist and later they told journalists that their party will issue a comprehensive statement on the matter.
“We are going to inform our President Nelson Chamisa who was not in the chamber and party leadership of the decision made.
“However, we did not participate in elections under MDC-T.
“We participated under the MDC Alliance and it is shocking that some people are now giving us a party we do not belong to.
“We actually competed with the MDC T,” Hwende said.
Timveous said she was unfazed by the announcement, adding it was exposing Zanu PF’s fear of the MDC Alliance.
“I do not care – no matter what they do I support Chamisa all the way to the State House.
“There is no retreat or surrender.
“I am not shocked by the ploys of this regime,” Timveous said.
It is not yet clear whether when the House resumes on May 19 more opposition legislators will be fired
The Supreme Court recently ruled that Nelson Chamisa’s ascension to head MDC-T had violated the party’s constitution.
However, Chamisa and his party have been arguing that the ruling of the Supreme Court did not affect the MDC Alliance, but rather MDC-T.
MDC-T is due to hold a congress within the next two months following the Supreme Court ruling, with Khupe, Mwonzora and Morgen Komichi expected to run for the presidency.
The decision to recall the three could have massive ramifications for parliament, as a number of legislators could also be recalled.
By firing the legislators, Khupe could effectively now be in charge of two parties in the legislature, her MDC-T and MDC Alliance.