|More defections at MDC-T|
|Monday, 09 July 2012 13:05|
Sunday News CorrespondentTHE Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai-led Movement for Democratic Change was yesterday dealt another major blow when close to 100 of its members defected to the Professor Welshman Ncube-led MDC formation, citing ill-treatment by the party leadership.
This brings to 254 the number of MDC-T members who have defected in the last couple of weeks, amid speculation that the party is fast losing its support base in the Matabeleland region.
The recent defectors come from Makokoba, Mzilikazi and Emganwini districts.
Welcoming the new members the party’s Bulawayo province vice chairperson, Mr Paul Malaba, said while they were being referred to as defectors the truth was that they were simply coming back to where they belonged.
“The word defectors is a harsh term, it gives the impression that you people are going to defect once you feel this party is not doing what you feel is right, but the truth is that you are simply coming back home. This is the original MDC and it is where you all belong,” said Mr Malaba.
Also commenting on the defections, the province’s spokesperson Mr Edwin Ndlovu said while they had expected over 200 new members, those from Pumula district had failed to be part of the event due to a logistical problem.
“We are happy to welcome back these people, we however had expected over 200 of them but those from Pumula district failed to be part of the proceedings,” said Mr Ndlovu.
In different interviews, the defectors alleged that the MDC-T leadership had used them and left them for the dogs when they felt they no longer needed their help.
“I was the youth organiser for Makokoba district and I can tell you that Deputy Prime Minister Thokozani Khupe used me but when she felt she was tired of using me she just expelled me and instead put in her boys, Councillor James Sithole and Mr Cornelius Nyatsangwa, who were not even there when we began campaigning for the party.
“I can also tell you that before I came here to announce my intention to rejoin MDC, they called me claiming I am the best and they need me but honestly it was too late because I am through being used,” said Mr Dereck Zulu.
Another youth, who only identified herself as Tracy from Makokoba district, alleged that DPM Khupe had expelled them and had clearly stated that the party no longer needed their services.
“She told us that leaders come and go therefore we could easily be replaced hence we are also saying that time for her to go is now, we won’t be part of any set up that does not want us,” said Tracy.
Most of the defectors accused the MDC-T of not being sincere in their policies and making fake promises to the electorate with the hope of convincing them to vote for the party.
The issue of the defections has been a thorn in the flesh for MDC-T, with Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai last week admitting that the province had been hit by defections despite DPM Khupe vehemently refuting the claims, alleging that the people who had joined the MDC were not from the MDC-T.
The party’s provincial chairperson, Mr Gorden Moyo, also denounced the defectors as impostors.
However, party insiders alleged that the defections were emanating from the factional wars in the party’s provincial structures with the defectors being reportedly part of a group aligned to Ms Thabitha Khumalo and Senator Matson Hlalo.