BULAWAYO – Division has struck the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) structures in Matebeleland following the recall of the party’s Members of Parliament (MPs) and 17 councillors in the region.
Sengezo Tshabangu, who identifies as the interim CCC secretary-general, initiated the recall of the MPs and councillors, contending that they were no longer members of the opposition party.
Although the CCC has accused Tshabangu of being a Zanu-PF proxy and an impostor, reports indicate that regionalism is causing turmoil within the CCC. Those targeted for recall are being accused of not being “natives” of Matebeleland.
Tshabangu is said to have collaborated with senior party members, including recently elected councillors and MPs primarily from Bulawayo, who were dissatisfied with the alleged imposition of some candidates during the party’s candidate selection process leading up to the August 23 and 24 elections.
Sources suggest that the disgruntled group held five meetings prior to the recalls, with the most recent meeting taking place a day before CCC leader Nelson Chamisa addressed members in Bulawayo last Friday.
Speaker of the National Assembly, Jacob Mudenda, has officially notified the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) of the vacant seats. However, the recalled MPs have filed a High Court application to challenge their removal from the House.
On Monday, CCC Matebeleland North chairperson Prince Dubeko Sibanda, one of the affected legislators, revealed that he was aware of the plot by certain party members he claimed were collaborating with Zanu-PF to destabilize the opposition.
“Tshabangu is not acting alone in this,” said Dubeko-Sibanda. “We know that at some point, they went and met with Zanu-PF members to seek assistance in wresting the party from Chamisa.”
Tshabangu’s spokesperson, Khaliphani Phugeni, defended the recalls during an interview with American radio station Studio 7. Phugeni asserted that Tshabangu was nominated for the Lobengula-Magwegwe constituency and that he was unfairly treated. He added, “What will happen is that the court will ask for the (CCC) constitution. Tshabangu has it, and others do not.”
Source – newsday