HARARE – Lovemore Madhuku, National Constitutional Assembly (NCA) leader, is courting former Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara to join his party, in an effort to mount a strong opposition against Zanu PF in 2018.
The constitutional law expert transformed the civil rights organisation from a constitutional pressure group advocating a people-driven governing charter, into an opposition political party three months ago.
Mutambara declined to comment.
“I don’t want to talk to you and can you stop bothering me,” he said.
Madhuku referred all questions to the party’s spokesmen Blessing Vava and Madock Chivasa.
“I cannot confirm to you that Mutambara has joined the party,” Vava said.
“As a party, we respect the confidentiality of our members and so I wouldn’t confirm nor deny that Mutambara is with us. But what I can tell you is that a lot of Zimbabweans are excited about the NCA.”
NCA has been courting MDC heavy hitters. Two former MDC mayors Misheck Shoko and Farai Nyandoro joined the party two months ago.
Emmanuel Chiroto, the former deputy Harare mayor, Aaron Chinhara who lost the MDC primaries for Redcliff and former Sunningdale councillor Musa Macheza have also joined the NCA.
Former Voluntary Media Council of Zimbabwe director Takura Zhangazha also joined the party.
Recently, Job Sikhala disbanded his MDC-99 party and merged it with NCA.
Sikhala said the unified parties will operate under the flagship of NCA and top leadership of the two parties will collaborate until congress scheduled for March next year.
Madhuku has been on an aggressive recruitment exercise, setting up branches all over the party.
A senior party member who insisted on anonymity told the Daily News this week that overtures have been made to the former deputy premier to join the party.
“He is set to join us very soon. We approached him and he seemed interested,” the source said.
“Mutambara is in the country and currently he is seized with his personal business. If everything goes well, we will unveil him as a member of NCA early next year.”
The source could not divulge which position the professor of robotics will be offered.
“That is still under negotiations but he will get a senior position. He can deputise Madhuku or be given another post, but as of now l cannot tell you exactly which position he will assume,” the source added.
Mutambara has been consigned to political wilderness after the end of the unity government, where he was a deputy Prime Minister.
He was widely tipped to be appointed a minister in President Robert Mugabe’s Cabinet.
Following his snubbing by Mugabe, Mutambara has gone into hibernation. Even his MDC faction is planning the future without him.
Mutambara entered mainstream politics in 2006 after being invited to lead a breakaway MDC faction.
However, he was deposed by Welshman Ncube in 2011.