The Democratic Union of Zimbabwe (DUZ) party is in disarray after its communications director, Itayi Tawona Muchemwa, resigned citing a diverted political focus and accused party leader, Robert Chapman of only wanting influence in order to join the Political Actors Dialogue (POLAD) framework.
Muchemwa’s resignation comes a week after party Youth National Chairperson, Elvis Dzvene, also resigned, accusing the leadership of dictatorial tendencies.
In his resignation letter to the party president and Secretary General, Pishai Muchauya, Muchemwa cited dictatorship by senior party members since all decisions are passed by few individuals, which is against the party constitution.
“There is victimisation of members during and after meetings by top executives,” he said, adding DUZ has diverted from its founding principles.
“Funding and resources are only known by the principals as the party has been personalised.”
In an interview with CITE, Muchemwa alleged DUZ is secretly lobbying to join the ruling party after the election to secure an influential position in the government which contradicts the aims and objectives of the party.
“When I joined him, I thought Chapman was a genuine guy but he’s not. Some of the other reasons why (former youth leader) Elvis left was because he had been assigned to go speak to some guys in Zanu PF and get funds,” Muchemwa alleged, adding that Chapman “later told them his agenda was to disturb CCC.”
“He wants to negotiate with Zanu PF so that once the agenda of CCC has failed, he may claim some position in Zanu PF.”
Muchemwa claimed Chapman craves fame and wants to go into POLAD and be in Zanu PF.
“He will be lucky to get 20 000 votes.”
The former communications director said DUZ was in Bulawayo last week for a meeting with structures but only three people attended.
“They are talking about launching the party officially in Bulawayo but in Bulawayo, people are not so foolish like what he was thinking. From that magnitude that was there at Amphitheatre in February, where nearly 1 000 came, this time only three people attended a meeting. So you can see how bad the situation is. They are thinking of moving the launch to Masvingo,” Muchemwa said.
He added that Chapman was walking around as if he was a “head of state” but did not listen to anyone.
“As communications director, I had been trying to sell his idea, working on a voluntary basis. I have been in politics since 1998 and I’m a former ZINASU member but he lies too much. Of the 10 coordinators, only three are on his side. The others are scared of victimisation and want to wait until elections but I said we must expose this guy because he’s a project. He doesn’t have money and fails to buy US$50 data for me as communications director,” Muchemwa claimed.
“The party doesn’t have t-shirts yet you will be trying to protect the brand. DUZ doesn’t have a single car, the cars that people see -the Hilux and Range Rover are hired cars. Do you think he can defeat Zanu? Let’s be realistic. He doesn’t have a house but moves from BnB motels, all his clothes will be in the car and when I spoke to him, he said he was scared of being assassinated. He is not well known like Job Sikhala, let alone Ostallos.”
The former communications director also lamented the lack of involvement of national members in decision-making.
“There is no bank account or office for the party, as everything is operated from the briefcase. There is a lack of election seriousness and preparedness. No candidates from the council to parliament have been sorted yet, as everything is kept to the principal alone. Policy documents like a manifesto and candidate selection are only known by the principal,” Muchemwa said.
“I regret any inconvenience my resignation may cause the party and wish the party all the best in its future endeavours.”