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Tsvangirai Attacks Zim Govt for Not Releasing Political Parties Funds

Movement for Democratic Change (MDC-T) leader Morgan Tsvangirai and Zanu PF's Robert Mugabe (AP Photos/Collage by Ntungamili Nkomo)

Former prime minister and leader of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), Morgan Tsvangirai, is accusing President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF of sabotaging his party’s operations by failing to release funds it is entitled to under the Political Parties (Finance) Act.

The Act stipulates that a party that garners at least 5 percent of the vote in a previous election is eligible to receive public funds.

Only Zanu PF and the MDC have enjoyed this privilege following the 2008 and 2013 general elections.

Most political parties in the country still depend on handouts from generous individuals, companies, and private organizations. The law does not allow Zimbabwean parties to receive foreign funding.

But the cash-strapped Harare has been failing to meet its constitutional obligation to release the $5 million it owes to the MDC and Zanu PF.

Mr. Tsvangirai’s party is now struggling to raise enough money for its congress which is set for Harare beginning October 30.

Tsvangirai’s party is facing its third split after some senior party officials accused him of trying to change the party constitution and concentrate power in his office. This comes at a time when the party is heading for an elective congress.

Reporter Blessing Zulu questioned Mr. Tsvangirai about allegations that he is causing friction in the party by pushing for constitutional reforms that some of his subordinates allege are undemocratic.

Meanwhile, the former prime minister on Wednesday urged Members of Parliament from his party to report back to their constituencies to avoid a breakdown in communication with their supporters.

Mr. Tsvangirai met at Harvest House with 80 lawmakers from his party where they discussed among other issues, the economic situation in the country, the party’s constitution and their roadmap leading to the 2018 elections.