By Nyashadzashe Ndoro
The Parliament of Zimbabwe has ordered recalled MDC Alliance legislators to surrender their Diplomatic Passports to the Registrar General and get their ordinary passports.
In a letter directed to MDC Alliance secretary general Charlton Hwende, signed by Clerk of Parliament Kennedy Chokuda dated 31 August 2020, the former Kuwadzana East MP was ordered to submit his Diplomatic Passport back.
“As you may be aware, His Excellency President Emmerson Mnangagwa gracefully extended the facility for all Members of Parliament to hold Diplomatic Passports in September 2019.
“You may recall conditions to use the document were linked to tenure of the current Parliament inclusive of you being a serving member of the Parliament of Zimbabwe.
“Following your recall from Parliament, in accordance with Section 129 (1)(k) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, you are, therefore, kindly requested to submit the diplomatic Passport to the Registrar General’s Office and receive your ordinary passport in accordance with the intended conditions attached during the issuance of the document,” read the letter.
Hwende slammed Mnangagwa and accused him of orchestrating the development.
“The problem with ED and his group is that they don’t understand us as MDC Members. We are not driven by money, cars or Diplomatic Passports. We are driven by the desire to ensure that our PEOPLE have a better life. We are people centered and people driven,” Hwende said.
In May this year, MDC-T acting president Thokozani Khupe through reinstated secretary general Douglas Mwonzora recalled MDC Alliance MPs, Prosper Mutseyami, Hwende, Thabitha Khumalo and Senator Lillian Timveos among other MPs and councillors.
This happened at a time when the MDC leadership wrangle was before the courts. The recall followed a Supreme Court ruling passed in April in which Khupe was reinstated as acting president of the MDC replacing the late founder leader, Morgan Tsvangirai who died in February 2018.
The court had also ordered Khupe to organise an extraordinary congress within three months to elect a new president but the period has passed and Parliament is controversially still recognising the MDC-T leadership.
Soon after Tsvangirai’s death Khupe and MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa, were involved in a fierce tussle to replace Tsvangirai as MDC-T president.
Chamisa emerged with a greater number of people both in leadership and ground resulting in Khupe forming a splinter faction, the MDC-T. Nehanda Radio