Mwonzora Abandons Morgan Tsvangirai House
29 July 2021The Douglas Mwonzora-led MDC-T has reportedly been forced to close its offices at the Morgan Richard Tsvangirai House after the City of Harare cut water supplies over unpaid bills amounting to over $1.9 million. The party, which is facing crippling financial challenges, has also failed to pay its workers since December. MDC-T workers have threatened to beat up top executives, including treasurer-general Tapiwa Mashakada, once they set foot at the offices. NewsDay reported sources as having said that the MDC-T on Wednesday held its standing committee meeting at a church premise in Hatfield which was hired due to the water crisis issue as well as fear of being beaten up by angry party vigilantes. A senior party official who spoke to the publication revealed that the party failed to clear salary arrears for employees who had gone for months without being paid. Said the official:
The water bill has been accumulating since the party offices were taken over by the MDC-T. They can’t convene where there is no water, so they are hiring venues to conduct their meetings. Today (yesterday), they had their meeting in Hatfield at Baptist Church. They are not financially stable to settle the $1.9 million unpaid water bill.The party is experiencing financial woes despite having received $29 million from the government as part of the grants under the Political Parties (Finance) Act. It received another grant from the government under the Political Parties (Finance) Act and Mashakada said he had set aside $3 million for salaries. The money, however, vanished and Mwonzora kept promising the youths that Mashakada would pay them. Mwonzora’s spokesperson Lloyd Damba confirmed the party had closed its offices but said the decision was made in compliance with the COVID-19 regulations set by the government. Contacted by NewsDay for comment over the party bill, Harare City Council spokesperson Michael Chideme said: “Let me check for you.” The publication however could not get an update from Chideme at the time of going to print last night.