Zimbabwe police assist opposition faction sieze control of Harvest House


AN apparent attempt by reinstated MDC-T secretary-general Douglas Mwonzora to seize control of MDC head office, Harvest House failed Thursday evening.

Armed anti-riot police accompanied by MDC-T security details and youths tried to gain control of the building now rechristened Richard Morgan Tsvangirai House but failed after facing resistance from MDC Alliance secretary-general Charlton Hwende and aligned party youths.

The police were seeking entrance based on a letter written by Mwonzora requesting their help to gain control of the building.

Zanu PF Harare province youths led by Godfrey Gomwe were also alleged to be in the company of the police.

“Rebels with the assistance of police tried to grab MRT House this evening, the scheme failed after getting resistance,” MDC Alliance sources said.

Hwende had earlier confirmed anti-riot police were at the party offices although they had no court order to gain access.

“Armed riot police is now at Harvest House they have no court order and we are talking to them,” he wrote on Twitter.

Mwonzora was also quoted in the State media Thursday confirming that he was facing challenges in occupying the building as youths aligned to the MDC Alliance were promising a bloodbath,

“We have said to the people who were occupying the building that they should hand it over, but they have not done so,” Mwonzora said.

“In fact, they have been promising a bloodbath. I am told there are about 30 youths holed inside there with all manner of crude weapons to do harm to anybody who comes. Now, that is something we cannot accept. We are trying to use dialogue and persuasion for them to see sense and do what is right. The long and short of it is that we will have the building.”

The dogfight for control of the building started this week when Speaker of Parliament Jacob Mudenda expelled Hwende and three other MDC MPs as legislators at the instigation of Mwonzora.

This follows a Supreme Court judgment passed last month, which ruled that Nelson Chamisa was an illegitimate president of the MDC and appointed Thokozani Khupe the Acting President with a mandate of holding an extraordinary congress within 90 days using the party’s 2014 structures.