Two formations of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) led by Morgan Tsvangirai and Welshman Ncube have signed a Memorandum of Agreement promising to form a formidable force to contest the 2018 presidential, parliamentary and local government elections.
Tsvangirai and Ncube signed the agreement on Thursday, a day after the MDC-T and Joice Mujuru’s National People’s Party crafted a similar deal.
In a statement, Tsvangirai said he is happy that he will be working with Ncube following a fallout in 2005 that led to the split of the MDC.
“Today we continue the journey that we started yesterday with Dr. Joice Mujuru; a journey whose destination is a democratic, free and prosperous Zimbabwe under a caring government.
“… It would be remiss for me not to mention that whilst yesterday we started a journey of alliance building, the real journey for the democratization of our country started in 1997 with people like myself and Professor Ncube here, when we launched the National Constitutional Assembly. It was an inspired process designed to give the people of this country the freedom that they demand and deserve through the enactment of a democratic constitution.”
He said it would also be equally dishonest not to recognize that in their journey with Professor Ncube they both made mistakes.
“We split our party in 2005. The cost of that vote splitting in addition to the blatant manipulation of results was delayed change for the people of Zimbabwe in 2008. Ladies and gentleman, it takes humble leadership to accept one’s mistakes but it takes bold leadership to correct those mistakes.”
The former Prime Minister said he was relieved and pleased to have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Professor Ncube, as a first step towards undoing the damage they caused.
He said the two will open a new chapter and craft a political agreement that should see them harness and combine their known electoral strength to face a common opponent as a united front.
“If anyone in this country expects us to contest the next elections separately as we did in 2008 and 2013 and expect a different result, it will not only be a third moment of real madness, but the highest form of insanity and none of us is insane. Finally, to my late friend and comrade Gibson Sibanda, I have taken the first step to do that which you would have wanted us to do.”
He said they decided to come together once again because Zimbabwe and the collective interests of its people are more important than them.
“Today, we take pride in that we achieved what we set ourselves to do – a new democratic Constitution with a superior bill of rights. This was against the wishes of President Mugabe and Zanu-PF. Sadly, most parts of that constitution, notably devolution of power to the provinces are still to be implemented because democracy and freedom are alien to President Mugabe and Zanu-PF. A difficult proposition indeed as President Mugabe once said.
“I want to promise today that come 2018, we will fully implement our Constitution as part of our democratization agenda and ensure that our provinces and local authorities take responsibility for the management of their own affairs.”
He promised to revive industries and create job opportunities for millions of Zimbabweans if they beat Zanu PF in the crucial elections.