A faction vying for control of the MDC-T says it could soon make a police report implicating Advocate Nelson Chamisa in the violence that occurred at the burial of the opposition party’s president, Mr Morgan Tsvangirai, in Buhera last week.
Adv Chamisa is one of three party deputy presidents, along with Dr Thokozani Khupe and Engineer Elias Mudzuri, positioning themselves to succeed Mr Tsvangirai.
Police Commissioner-General Godwin Matanga last week said law enforcement agents were investigating the matter, and spokesperson Chief Superintendent Paul Nyathi said details on progress on this front would be available in coming days.
Sources opposed to Adv Chamisa’s ascendance said they were putitng together a dossier on Adv Chamisa’s alleged complicity in the Buhera violence that saw some youths trying to burn Dr Khupe, party secretary-general Mr Douglas Mwonzora and organising secretary Abednico Bhebhe alive.
An anti-Chamisa official who is high up in the party hierarchy said: “Chamisa’s hunger for power is amazing. He could not wait for our president to be buried. But this time, we are going to find a solution to deal with him that may catch him by surprise.
“You could soon see him being called by the police to explain what happened in Buhera. The matter cannot simply end like this and yet some hired thugs tried to burn down a house in which three very senior party officials had retreated to when faced with assault.”
Another official claimed Adv Chamisa sponsored hooligans to intimidate his opponents at the burial.
“There is a lot going on and many people are not happy with the manner that he is acting. He is now appearing like a dictator. At public functions, he does not allow anyone else to speak because he wants all the glory to be accorded to him.”
Yesterday, Adv Chamisa dismissed the allegations.
“Those are petty issues,” he said. “I don’t comment on those issues. Get in touch with (director of communications in the MDC-T president’s office) Luke (Tamborinyoka) or (MDC-T secretary for security) Giles Mutsekwa.”
Both could not be reached for comment.
At the burial, a visibly angry Mr Mwonzora publicly confronted Adv Chamisa and appeared to make threatening gestures at him; while Dr Khupe – who was not accorded VIP status when things calmed down somewhat – refused to greet Adv Chamisa when he extended his hand to her.
Yesterday Mr Mwonzora said of developments in the party: “I will speak at the right time.”
An official said Dr Khupe and Mr Mwonzora also wanted to know what role deputy organising secretary Mr Amos Chibaya, deputy treasurer-general Mr Charlton Hwende, and one other official who is a prominent member of a pro-Chamisa group calling itself the Vanguard, allegedly played in the violence.
Mr Chibaya told The Sunday Mail: “As you saw in Buhera, I was too busy to be involved with those youths. I was on stage, and the day before I did not interact with the youths because I arrived in Buhera very late and was not in touch with them. I only know about the violence from the videos and the reports that I have seen.”
Mr Hwende responded to the allegations thus: “First and foremost, I’m not a violent person, that is why as part of the leadership we have condemned the violence. By next week everyone will know the full story of what transpired after the team completes investigations.
“As a party we actually encourage the victims to approach the police and they are free to do so and point out the culprits if they so wish.”
Meanwhile, sources said Eng Mudzuri – despite attending an MDC-T Standing Committee meeting on Friday that appeared to endorse Adv Chamisa’s leadership – still wanted the party to hold a congress to elect a president ahead of the 2018 harmonised elections.
The source also said as a last resort, Eng Mudzuri was prepared to let Adv Chamisa stand in the Presidential race knowing that he would “most likely lose”, after which he would challenge him at a congress and assume leadership of the party.
Yesterday, Eng Mudzuri’s phone was not reachable but sources close to him said: “His attendance at the meeting was not by any means an endorsement of Chamisa. He still wants the extraordinary congress to be held.”