Movement for Democratic Change supporters have rejected the creation of a second Vice-President’s post within the party saying it will not advance anything.
The party currently has only one Vice-President but wanted to emulate its main rival, the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front, which has two Vice-Presidents. ZANU-PF was forced to have two Vice-Presidents at the merger of ZANU-PF and the Zimbabwe African People’s Union in 1987.
This was seen as the swallowing of ZAPU because ZANU-PF retained its structures and only accommodated ZAPU as junior partners. The two posts also created a lot of confusion as it was never clear who was senior Simon Muzenda or Joshua Nkomo, and Joseph Msika or Joice Mujuru, and Joice Mujuru or John Nkomo.
To make matters worse, the prevailing constitution was also vague about which deputy would succeed the president in the event of an untimely death.
There is widespread feeling that the MDC wants to adopt a similar structure to protect party president Morgan Tsvangirai. There have been reports that the party wants to water down the powers of other senior posts especially that of secretary-general.
The two splits within the party over the past 15-years have both been engineered by the secretary-generals, who ironically are both lawyers. The Tsvangirai faction of the MDC is due to hold a special congress in October.
It was forced to push forward its congress by two years following calls for Tsvangirai to step down to give way to new leadership after he had failed to unseat Robert Mugabe for the third time.