MASVINGO – The Masvingo province leadership of Morgan Tsvangirai-led MDC said yesterday it was fully behind the opposition leader amid a push to oust him.
The Masvingo provincial leadership, flanked by members of the youth wing, told a news conference here yesterday, that Tsvangirai cannot be singled out for blame in the July 31 poll defeat.
Tongai Matutu, MDC Masvingo secretary, labelled those pushing for leadership renewal “saboteurs.”
“Masvingo province is totally behind the MDC president Tsvangirai,” Matutu said.
“The issue of leadership renewal is not about targeting one individual but the whole leadership. Why would people want one person to go after the election loss induced by rigging?
“MDC was defeated as a team, not him alone so if there is need for renewal, it must affect everyone, starting from the branch, not only one person at the top.”
Matutu challenged those who are calling for a new leader to first present new ideas and a strategy that can win elections in future.
“If there are those who say they have better ideas or strategy, can they bring them up, but if they have, why didn’t they contribute them to the party during the elections? It means they sabotaged the party as a whole.”
Matutu said the party cannot afford to lose Tsvangirai at this juncture.
“The man Tsvangirai commands great support in the grassroots, who can go into the rural areas and address villagers like him,” Matutu said.
“We cannot afford a new leader who does not have such attributes and who needs time to be mentored so that he will be able to address the grassroots. Actually, I do not see any one in the leadership besides him who can do that, there is absolutely no-one, so why lose him?” he said.
Oliver Chirume, MDC Masvingo youth chairperson, also affirmed his wing’s loyalty to Tsvangirai.
“As youth, we are in agreement with our provincial leaders’ position,” he said.
“We condemn in the strongest terms those who are calling for the removal of our leader under the so called ‘plot to ouster Tsvangirai’.”
Chirume blasted party officials calling for Tsvangirai’s ouster as “power hungry individuals who are bent on derailing the revolution of change.”
“We are against over ambitious power hungry individuals who blame one person for what happened during the elections,” Chirume said.
“What we need now is redemption not reduction, we should re-organise and prepare ourselves for the future with all the strength we have as a party so we do not need to lose anyone, let alone our great leader Tsvangirai.”