MDC-T Is Good At Campaigning Not Governing –Bennett
Harare, March 28, 2012 – Roy Bennett, the exiled treasurer –general of the
Movement for Democratic Change (MDC-T) led by Prime Minister Morgan
Tsvangirai believes his party is good at campaigning but it lacks the people
who knows how to run a government.
Bennett told the former United States ambassador to Zimbabwe Charles Ray
about the MDC-T’s inability to deliver the goods to the people despite its
strong ability to campaign in a diplomatic cable he dispatched to Washington
in February 2010 but released last week by whistle blowing website,
Bennett suggested the need for a leadership capacity building exercise.
The former MP for Chimanimani said the MDC-T had been unfocused and
described the Office of the Prime Minister as ‘weak’.
He said the party had been left largely unattended as party stalwarts such
as Tendai Biti were occupied with government business. Bennett said the
MDC-T, under Tsvangirai’s leadership had a tremendous amount of popularity
throughout the country, in part due to Tsvangirai’s sincerity and humility,
and in part due to Zanu (PF) arrogance and lack of concern for the common
Despite his praise of Tsvangirai, Bennett said the MDC-T lacked the capacity
to effectively run a government.
Ray in his commentary said: ”Bennett is an MDC hardliner who has been
frustrated with the MDC’s progress in the coalition government and in party
While he was encouraged by the determination of the Standing Committee to
take a more assertive approach vis-a-vis Zanu (PF), we have seen this
“Hardliners in the party convince Tsvangirai to be more assertive. He
agrees, there is a flurry of activity, and then MDC-T falls back into the
same dance with Zanu PF. We’ll see if this time is any different.”
Bennett said the MDC-T’s Standing Committee, consisting of the top 12
ranking officials, had just held a series of strategy sessions to address
these thorny issues.
He said the MDC-T concluded that Zanu PF would not allow it to effectively
participate in government; it therefore resolved to focus its efforts on the
party in order to build it and prepare for elections.
Bennett told Ray that while much of US and other Western support had focused
on the party, there was a compelling need for institution building.
He said apart from the MDC, Zanu-PF would be involved in a future Zimbabwe
and the challenge was to identify those in Zanu-PF who can play constructive
roles, and to find ways to bolster them against extremists in President
Robert Mugabe’s party.
Ray said he was told by Bennett that while there were several civil society
organizations in Zimbabwe, there was no mass civil consciousness that could
act as a counterweight to Zanu (PF).
Bennett told the former ambassador there was a compelling need to do more to
build civil society.
He said they seemed to be lacking a sense of interconnectedness among all
the various civil society groups.
Bennett also discussed perceptions of MDC-T corruption.
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