By Tichaona Sibanda
SW Radio Africa
30 January 2014
The MDC-T deputy treasurer-general Elton Mangoma on Thursday refused to speak to SW Radio Africa, claiming the station was biased against him.
He had written to party leader Morgan Tsvangirai, asking him to step down, so SWRA wanted to give him the opportunity to put the record straight. But Mangoma said he was unhappy that we had linked him to exiled party treasurer Roy Bennett in the intensified efforts to stop Tsvangirai from standing again as the presidential candidate in the 2018 elections.
The senior MDC-T official berated this writer: ‘I always thought you were a fair journalist, but to me personally you are not,’ said Mangoma, accusing the station of being used by someone to fight their wars.
SW Radio Africa had tried on many occasions to speak to Mangoma, but his phone had remained unanswered, until today. But he remained adamant that he was not going to give us his side of the story.
‘This is why I don’t speak to the Herald. So you can write that I refused to speak to you. We want to be civil, you can admit your errors, we patch up and we move on but for now, I cannot comment on this story because you have already judged me without seeking my side of the story,’
When he insisted that all the stories we wrote about him were wrong, we asked him to point out the mistakes.
‘The only thing that is correct in your articles is that we met as a standing committee last week Friday, otherwise most of the stuff is wrong,’ he added.
Last week we reported that MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai moved a motion to call for an early congress in March, in an attempt to head off an expected challenge from his political rivals.
We said that the top leadership of the opposition party, the standing committee, met in Harare, where Tsvangirai called for a snap party vote in a bid to end uncertainty over his job.
But party members implored Tsvangirai to concentrate on restructuring the party in preparations for the 2018 elections. The meeting unanimously agreed the next congress will be held as scheduled in 2016.
We then reported that Mangoma had presented a letter to Tsvangirai, asking him to step down while an interim leadership, under vice president Thokozani Khupe, took over.
SW Radio Africa remains mystified as to why Mangoma would not take this opportunity to present his side of the story, particularly as he was reportedly happy to be interviewed by Daily News and ZiFM radio.