PREPARATIONS for the MDC congress due in May are well on course with ward congresses being held countrywide this weekend.
This follows the completion of branch congresses.
MDC organising secretary Amos Chibaya told the Daily News on Sunday yesterday that the 20-year-old opposition party hopes to proceed to district congresses from March 29 to 31 – a process than would then lead into provincial congresses from April 7 to 16, starting with Matabeleland South Province.
Once the provincial congresses are concluded, the regional executives will then nominate candidates to positions in the national executive of the party, including those that will run for the presidency.
“The process so far has gone on peacefully and without incident. Notwithstanding misleading press reports of chaos, our congress is living true to the democratic culture and character as encapsulated in chapter 4 of the MDC constitution,” said Chibaya.
“Our congress to be held on 24-26 May will be a festival of ideas. It will prioritise propositions and not positions. So far, the people across the country continue to elect leaders of their choice at various levels and our congress process is well on course”.
At the eagerly-anticipated congress, a new party leadership will be chosen.
It is the first congress to be held without MDC’s revered founding president, Morgan Tsvangirai, who died early last year after losing his valiant battle against cancer of the colon.
The party’s charismatic leader, Nelson Chamisa – who lost to President Emmerson Mnangagwa in last year’s historic elections — could face competition from either Elias Mudzuri or respected secretary-general Douglas Mwonzora at the gathering.
The congress preparations are dogged by allegations of structure manipulation by rival factions that are gunning for top positions within the country’s largest opposition party.
Intense jostling for positions ahead of the much-awaited congress is escalating, resulting in the ongoing MDC restructuring being mired in chaos.
The race for positions is getting hotter and bitterer by the day, amid damaging allegations that some senior MDC officials are creating dodgy structures along factional lines to further their interests.