Monday, 19 October 2020

KHUPE SQUANDERED $7 MILLION, SAYS BHEBHE

 MDC-T national organising secretary Abednico Bhebhe has accused party interim leader Thokozani Khupe and acting national chairman Morgen Komichi of wiping out $7 million advanced to the party under the Political Parties Finance Act without the authority of the national executive.

Bhebhe has also accused the party leadership of tempering with the 2014 structures and bring in their own list of participants ahead of the extraordinary congress.

This also came as the MDC-T on Saturday held a national executive council meeting virtually at a time two members had dragged the party to court to push it to provide critical information and holding of meetings ahead of the congress.

Party spokesperson Khalipani Phungeni could not immediately confirm the Saturday meeting while Komichi was not picking calls.

But Bhebhe made the allegation in his opposing affidavit in a case in which two disgruntled party members, Gilbert Kagodora and Nason Mamuse have approached the courts demanding transparency in the way Khupe is organising the extraordinary congress.

The indaba was ordered by the Supreme Court in March to resolve the leadership crisis in the opposition.

The congress should be held using the party’s 2014 structures, according to the ruling that declared MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa illegitimate. It was not clear who participated in the virtual meeting yesterday.

Bhebhe, who was cited as a respondent together with Khupe (second respondent) and Komichi (third), but opted for own legal representation in the case in which he spilled the beans on how the MDC-T leader and national chairman have been making unilateral decisions without the authority of the national executive as demanded by the party’s constitution.

“First respondent (MDC-T) opened and now operates books of accounts without reference whatsoever to the national executive as is required by the constitution,” said Bhebhe in his opposing affidavit.

“In fact, first respondent received from the government of Zimbabwe, under the Political Finances Act, a whopping $7 million which second (Khupe) and third (Komichi) respondent wiped clean outside the mandate and framework of first respondent’s constitution.”

President Emmerson Mnangagwa in July gave Khupe $7,4 million, despite a Supreme Court ruling ordering the government to stop disbursing the money under the Political Parties Finance Act until a legal conflict over which formation is entitled to the money is settled.

High Court judge Justice Nyaradzo Munangati-Manongwa in May granted Chamisa an interim relief order barring Mnangagwa’s government from releasing the money to Khupe until the courts resolved dispute.

Bhebhe told the court that Khupe and Komichi were making unilateral decisions without the authority of the national executive council. He said that he would not oppose Kagodora and Mamuse’s applications because he was well aware that the MDC-T should organise the extraordinary congress.

The court papers showed the discord in Khupe’s camp and Bhebhe accused the leaders of trying to cherry pick who attends the congress, while also availing a list of congress delegates to provinces for verification without his knowledge. The organising secretary is ordinarily responsible for the structures.

Bhebhe accused Khupe and Komichi of “irregular conduct” by using unscrupulous means to “shut out” bona fide members from participating at the party’s upcoming extraordinary congress. Newsday

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