THE MDC-T has expressed concerns that its President Douglas Mwonzora’s accusers on the alleged fraud involving $300 000 party funds which he allegedly siphoned to pay one of the party lawyers Sarudzayi Chitsanga were still amplifying the accusations despite then acting President Thokozani Khupe having cleared him on the issue with the police.
Towards the MDC-T Extraordinary Congress in which Mwonzora was a contestant of Presidency against Khupe, Elias Mudzuri and Morgan Komichi, party member, Leornard Chisvo reported a fraud case against Mwonzora and finance director Tody Mapingire to the police at Highlands Police Station and the matter was recorded under RRB4586626.
However, Mwonzora during the campaigns revealed that the party lawyers who include Chitsanga, Lovemore Madhuku, Kholwani Ngwenya, one Mtungura and Nomatter Kadoko were owed over US$100 000 for their services and there was nothing criminal about Chitsanga being assisted during his bereavement.
On Tuesday party acting spokesperson Witness Dube said despite the party leader having been cleared by the former Acting President Khupe on the allegations, his accusers seemed to be continuing to amplify the accusations.
“These people are amplifying their lies with more vigour and it must be clearly known that our president was cleared on these allegations long back,” Dube said.
Dube said there were media (formal and social) reports suggesting that there was either theft of funds or money laundering at the MDC-T. He said the reports were malicious and false.
“They are designed to tarnish the image of the party and that of the winner of the historic extraordinary congress President Mwonzora. The congress dealt with the issue and concluded that they were false,” Dube said.
“Our finances were above board. We are surprised that the police are being driven by certain activists who have been unsuccessfully trying to extort money from the organisation.”
He appealed to the police not to be drawn into the MDC-T internal politics adding that they foresee that the allegations are meant to forestall the external audit called by the congress. He said all the monies of the party are accounted for. Dube unveiled a letter dated December 16 2020 which was written by Khupe to the police exonerating Mwonzora.
“It has come to our attention from press reports that one Leonard Chisvo approached your good offices and filed criminal charges against Senator Douglas Togaraseyi Mwonzora. From these reports it appears that Chisvo alleges that Mwonzora stole $300 000 from the MDCT. The said Chisvo is not known to us as he is not our official nor does he sit in any party organ,” Khupe wrote.
“He therefore does not have any power to represent us.
We also have gathered from press reports that the said Chisvo misrepresented to you that the National Executive Committee of the party had resolved to file these charges. This is not true. The National Executive Committee never sat as alleged by Chisvo. As a party we never at any time made any such resolution.”
Khupe noted that for the avoidance of doubt from the party records no money was ever stolen from the party by anyone let alone Mwonzora.
She said all their monies have been fully accounted for and all transactions were above Board.
“In short Mwonzora did not steal any money from MDCT as alleged by Chisvo. We are surprised that after reporting this matter to you Chisvo would go to the press to publish these allegations himself. We hope this clarifies issues,” Khupe wrote.
Indications were that the alleged missing funds came after the party allegedly received $61 million from the government under the Political Parties Finance Act and Mwonzora, with the aid of Mapingire, reportedly transferred $300 000 into Chitsanga’s account.
However, Dube said despite Khupe’s clarification of the issue to the police, Mwonzora’s rivals were continuing to amplify the claims through various platforms hence the need for the party to put it in public that the issue was cleared and closed.
— Zimbabwe Independent