Zimbabwe: Opposition MDC suspends Tsvangirai
A BBC reporter in Zimbabwe says the MDC appears to be heading for a split that will only strengthen Mr Mugabe’s hold on power.
Several other senior party figures were also reported to have been suspended at Saturday’s meeting, and some suspended members to have been reinstated.
The MDC statement said the party had been “transformed into a fiefdom of the leader” under Mr Tsvangirai. It also accused him of sponsoring a culture of violence against MDC members not aligned with him.
MDC Secretary General Tendai Biti, who spoke to journalists after the meeting, said Mr Tsvangirai and some other senior officials had “betrayed” the MDC’s struggle, AFP reported.
But an MDC spokesperson, Douglas Mwonzora, maintained that Mr Tsvangirai remained the MDC’s legitimate leader.
“This was not a national council meeting,” he told AFP.
David Coltart, a founding member of the MDC, told the BBC that Mr Tsvangirai’s suspension - although not unexpected - was a bad thing for democracy in Zimbabwe.”I’m not surprised this has happened because tensions have been brewing for quite a long time.
“But I am concerned about this. What we need in the opposition is consolidation, not further splitting.
Mr Tsvangirai has led MDC for the last 15 years.