The Sunday Mail
Who is closer to Morgan Tsvangirai than the rest?
That is the question that seems to occupy feuding factions of MDC-T as rivals take turns to parade family members of the deceased founding leader of the opposition, Mr Morgan Tsvangirai, to show that they are the Real McCoy.
Because the party’s suffix “T” stands for “Tsvangirai”, it appears rival pretenders to the throne have to demonstrate how “Tsvangirai-st” they are.
A couple of months ago, Mr Nelson Chamisa had Mr Tsvangirai’s daughter — Miss Vimbai Tsvangirai — on hand at a rally in Chiweshe endorse him as her father’s successor.
She told the faction supporters that Mr Chamisa would take “Zimbabwe to Canaan”.
Politics is often a game of one-upmanship, and the rival Dr Thokozani Khupe faction has been fairly long in showing its card.
It finally did so yesterday, when an uncle of the dear departed, Mr Cainos Chiremba, was paraded at the faction’s manifesto launch at the Bulawayo Amphitheatre.
Mr Chiremba was initially seated with ordinary faction members, but as the event continued Dr Khupe’s deputy organising secretary, Mr Alfred Ncube, asked him to come to the high table. He was introduced to the crowd by faction deputy president Mr Obert Gutu, who said they were blessed to have the spirit of Morgan Tsvangirai among them.
In an interview, Mr Chiremba said he was the late Mr Tsvangirai’s uncle and that he recognised Dr Khupe as MDC-T’s true.
He, however, acknowledged that the family of the deceased was divided on who to follow.
“We believe Dr Khupe is on the right side which is why I am here representing the Tsvangirai family today.
‘‘I personally used to have long discussions with Tsvangirai and he was very much particular about constitutionalism and Dr Khupe has shown those qualities.
“However, as a family we are currently very much divided on a number of issues including the issue of who is the rightful leader of the MDC-T but we are in the process of resolving it and I promise you once we have resolved this, then we will show Chamisa our true colours,” said Mr Chiremba.
The faction launched its manifesto titled “Building an Economy to Support Transformation (BEST)”.
Dr Khupe said if elected State President, her Government would prioritise economic rejuvenation through rapid re-industrialisation and creation of decent jobs.
“The MDC-T is very much aware of the present weak state of the country’s economy to recover without huge external financial support.
‘‘Our government shall re-engage with the international community and all progressive forces for the support the country desperately needs.
“We are both Pan-Africanists and social democrats. We strongly believe in a democratic developmental state to play a significant role in the development trajectory.
‘‘We believe in the right of workers to organise and for full respect of labour rights. Our economic growth and development must be pro-people,” she said.