By Mutsa Makuvaza
THE MDC-T led by Thokozani Khupe said it has adopted the MDC Alliance brand with immediate effect and will use the name when nominating candidates for by-elections on October 9, a development which could leave rival opposition leader Nelson Chamisa in a quandary.
This was revealed by the MDC-T acting chairman Morgen Komichi on Saturday. He was speaking at the Morgan Richard Tsvangirai House, formerly Harvest House to mark the 21st anniversary of the original MDC.
United Kingdom-based Zimbabwean academic, Alex Magaisa, who has been urging the MDC Alliance to drop the “toxic” MDC brand and adopt a new name, said the developments were not surprising, as he had warned on that multiple times.
“What has just happened should not shock anyone who has been following the MDC saga. It was foreseeable and it was written. The most important question is the response, which should be ready.
“There has never been a better time to demonstrate that people do not vote for party names,” said Magaisa, a constitutional lawyer and academic.
The MDC Alliance led by Nelson Chamisa vowed to settle the “battle” politically. In a statement on social media, Chamisa’s party still claimed ownership of the MDC Alliance brand.
“We are the MDC Alliance. We contested the 2018 election as the MDC Alliance under the Presidency of Nelson Chamisa.
“Our members were unlawfully recalled on account of being members of the MDC Alliance. This battle will be settled politically. Political power lies in the people,” said the party.
Pro-opposition activist Piers Pigou accused Chamisa of being always reactive instead of being proactive.
“Next step of what constitutes a major hijacking of the main opposition, MDC Alliance by a small group of ‘leaders’ who claim to represent huge numbers of Zimbabweans that never voted for them. Chamisa & his crew are behind the curve in reactive mode. Time for a major rebranding?” Pigou queried.
However, another pro-opposition activist, Freeman Chari, does not agree with name change.
“I don’t agree with rebranding. The purpose is clear. To suffocate and annihilate. Whatever Chamisa does they will still come after him. They will come after even his wife and kids. Focus on the game.
“As long as the military is ruling elections are useless. Focus on pressure!” Chari said.
Meanwhile, another pro-Chamisa activist, Pedzisayi Ruhanya, has described Khupe, Douglas Mwonzora and Morgen Komichi as “foolish puppets” of Zanu-PF. – Zimbabwe Voice