By Obey Manayiti
MDC-T organising secretary Abednico Bhebhe yesterday said the current behaviour of the party leadership on issues concerning constitutionalism was a reflection of how they will behave if they got into government.
Following the death of party leader Morgan Tsvangirai recently, the contestation for power turned fiery in the MDC-T with the three vice-presidents Nelson Chamisa, Elias Mudzuri and Thokozani Khupe claiming to be in charge.
However, it is Chamisa who is emerging victorious after the national council gave him the mandate to lead the party in an acting capacity.
He was endorsed by party structures on Friday to lead the party for the next 12 months and be the presidential candidate.
This is in direct contrast to calls for an extraordinary congress that was being advocated for by a section of the party leadership.
In an interview yesterday, Bhebhe said the party needed to adhere to its constitution.
“One thing that brings us together as members from different backgrounds is the constitution.
When we disobey the constitution, it is not only a recipe for disaster, but it’s a reflection of how we are going to handle matters when we get into government,” he said.
“The path you walk to power will reflect how you will behave when you are in power and such kind of behaviour breeds danger to democracy.
If other people think this is the correct way of doing things, well, time will tell.”
Bhebhe said a consultative meeting could not come up with such a decision because it was not above congress.
“That meeting cannot usurp the power of congress.
As long as we fail to solve this in an honest manner, we will be cheating Zimbabweans.
All that I want is for people to unite.
MDC-T secretary-general Douglas Mwonzora said they wanted unity now and to look at ways of reorienting the party.
“MDC-T has the potential to unite on condition that we strictly adhere to our constitution and internal processes.
We also have to adhere to our founding values, which include the values of democracy, solidarity, equality and fairness,” Mwonzora said.
“In politics we are not there to love one another, but we are bound by common values and common objectives.
We are going to revive the cadreship training programme that used to be there in the party because we now have young cadres who can physically attack the leadership of the party and so on.
We have to reorient our youths, we have to reorient the party.”
The party’s guardian council deputy chairman Cephas Makuyana said they were now in full swing to ensure that there was unity in the party.
He said it was encouraging to note that Chamisa apologised to Khupe over the Buhera violence during the burial of Tsvangirai.
“We don’t want war in the party. The party has a bible which is the constitution,” Makuyana said.
“The party will not fall.
There is no home that has no fights, but you cannot say because of such fights the family will fall.
Our role is to make warring parties work together.
The way I used to advise Tsvangirai is the same way I will continue advising the party leadership, including the acting president.”