HARARE – Joice Mujuru’s opposition political party will take legal action to stop any splinter group using the name National People’s Party (NPP), secretary-general Gift Nyandoro has warned.
This comes after the opposition party has split into two groups, the ex-vice president-led NPP and the National People’s Party Democrats (NPPD).
The breakaway party comprises the party’s national youth chair Lloyd Masiya, deputy national organising secretary Susan Chuma, secretary-general Diaspora Constituency Beulah Chavarika and secretary for Education Enock Mapanje.
Nyandoro told the Daily News that reports the party had split into two opposing factions were “pure nonsense”.
But when asked whether his party would take legal action against any group using the name NPP, he said yes.
“This group which calls themselves NPPD comprises persons who have been fired from the party,” Nyandoro said, adding that in terms of Article 2 of the party constitution, “it is clear that the name of the party and its symbol shall belong exclusively to the party for use by its members only.”
“It is therefore clear that the party name and symbol cannot be used by non-members like the group comprising (Munyaradzi) Banda, Mai Chuma, Masiya, Kuda Gara, Willard Gwerevende, Mapanje, among others,” Nyandoro said.
“Whilst the formation of a political party by those fired is their democratic right, they cannot purport to be doing so using our party name and logo as these belong exclusively to the party.
“Legal processes are currently in motion to bar the expelled members from putting the name and symbol of the party into disrepute”.
Masiya and his group, while concurring with Nyandoro that there was no split, said by coming up with the NPPD, they were carrying out their own version of
“Operation Restore Legacy” — a military intervention that topled long-ruling president Robert Mugabe and ushered in the country’s new President, Emmerson Mnangagwa into office.
“As such, we agree with the so called NPP legal department that there was no split but Operation Restore Legacy under the banner NPPD,” Masiya said.
He accused Nyandoro’s legal department of not doing anything when “vultures overturned the constitution.
“As NPPD, we are totally unfazed by political midgets and Lilliputians masquerading as legal supremos.
“The so-called expulsions are mere political dreams and allegations with no legal ramifications.
“We are strong and fully geared after completion of the cleansing ceremony and the party is back to the people,” Masiya declared.
This comes as the NPP has been rocked by a spate of desertions, with many accusing Mujuru of being captured by a small cabal seeking to push their factional agendas.
The Daily News heard that meetings have been extremely fractious, with much violent argument, barracking and interminable hair-splitting as every tiny point is dissected and analysed.
The disgruntled party members first wrote a letter to Mujuru last week, seeking her redress to their concerns, but claim that she did not take heed of the early warnings.
“Following the refusal by the NPP president to address our concerns as outlined in our petition on outstanding grievances of 12/12/2017 addressed to ..Mujuru, we, the aggrieved members of the party do hereby denounce the NPP top five leadership consisting: the president …Mujuru, the vice president John Mvundura, the vice president, Sam Sipepa Nkomo, the national secretary-general Gift Nyandoro, the national chairperson Dzikamai Mavhaire,” the splinter group said in a statement yesterday.
According to the group, the five top leaders have presided over the death of democracy and constitutionalism in the NPP and have “captured” Mujuru to an extent that she is subverting the will of the membership.
As the party continues to disintegrate, NPP’s provincial treasurer Canaan Matiashe, organising secretary Albert Mukaratirwa, secretary for Information and publicity Norman Mbizi and provincial chairperson Garikai Dzimunya, also tendered their resignation letters on Monday.