By Tichaona Sibanda
SW Radio Africa
13 March 2014
MDC99 leader Job Sikhala has rejoined the MDC-T, the party he left after the 2005 split, and immediately went on the verbal warpath against President Robert Mugabe, telling him to prepare ‘for the biggest fight of his lifetime.’
‘I swear on my dead mother that the hour is now. The dictator must start panicking now. We are back in the trenches…the fight is ready,’ Sikhala said in Harare on Thursday.
The former MP for St Mary’s when the MDC was united, did not waste time to articulate how a divided opposition will never win the fight against ZANU PF, urging all other democratic forces to follow his example.
‘There is no strength in disunity than unity. Let’s unite and reinvigorate the party and adopt the spirit of 1999 and 2000 when we were a force to be reckoned with. We need to rejuvenate this struggle and this can only be achieved through unity,’ Sikhala said.
He added: ‘We are going to use all our energy…all our ability to make sure change is delivered. 2018 is far away, a lot of things can happen between now and then. So vadictator tabatana zvino tuwuyako (to the dictator, we have now joined forces and we are coming your way)’
Party leader Morgan Tsvangirai who attended the press conference at Harvest House, dwelt at length on the issue of the factional infighting, that was triggered by attempts by his lieutenants to oust him, in particular the suspended deputy treasurer-general Elton Mangoma.
He explained that party members who are not happy with his leadership will have an opportunity to express themselves at the congress, while the rest of Zimbabwe will judge him at the next election.
Talking of the fissures, Tsvangirai said: ‘What is happening in the MDC-T is like a crisis in the cockpit…it will be sorted out. Any disagreements are sorted out by mutual discussion within the leadership.’
‘On Tuesday we had fruitful discussions in the standing committee and only yesterday (Wednesday) we had a finance and administration meeting of the party were we once again engaged in constructive discussions.’
Both meetings were attended by the secretary-general Tendai Biti who is linked to Mangoma, judging by the fact that he declared Mangoma’s suspension a ‘nullity.’
Tsvangirai added that as he has promised before, he will ensure that all progressive forces join hands to fight ZANU PF and Mugabe as a united opposition, adding that ‘all we need to do is unite.’
‘I will meet everyone, (Lovemore) Madhuku, (Welshman) Ncube to impress on them on the need for unification and only this week I met Simba Makoni to talk about that.’
Another founding member of the MDC who rejoined the Tsvangirai MDC-T on Thursday is Joubert Mudzumwe. After the split nine years ago, he joined the MDC-N and broke away with others to join then deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara’s MDC.