SPEAKER of the National Assembly, Jacob Mudenda, was yesterday coy about the way he will handle the MDC-T dispute that has seen Morgan Tsvangirai’s faction pushing for the expulsion of 11 legislators including former Finance minister Tendai Biti.
“Expelled” MDC-T secretary-general Biti wrote to Mudenda on Monday advising him of the “suspension” of Tsvangirai and his top lieutenants.
Biti asked the Speaker to protect MPs linked to his faction from being recalled saying he was the only one authorised to recommend such action against MDC-T legislators.
Tsvangirai’s loyalists met the following day and resolved to expel Biti together with nine MPs and one senator.
Mudenda said although he had received Biti’s letter, he would not discuss his next step with the media.
“Yes, I received the letter. You want me to administer issues through the Press; we do not operate like that. This is an institution governed by the law and Constitution,” he said.
“I have to apply myself with the contents of the letter, so I can’t discuss that with you.
“We have to see it, read and compare the arguments in terms of the Constitution and the law.”
Biti’s faction at the weekend had resolved to supend Tsvangirai for allegedly violating the party’s constitution.
MDC-T deputy president Thokozani Khupe, chairperson Lovemore Moyo, Morgan Komichi (deputy chairman), Nelson Chamisa (organising secretary), Abednico Bhebhe (deputy organising secretary) as well as Douglas Mwonzora (spokesperson) were also suspended at the weekend.
However, Tsvangirai on Tuesday dismissed the expulsion as a nullity and turned the guns on Biti whom he said had formed his own party.
In 2008, Bhebhe was among three MPs from the MDC then led by former Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara, who were expelled from Parliament after they were dismissed by the party for working with MDC-T.
But MDC failed in its bid to recall Mutambara and the deputy Speaker of Parliament Nomalanga Khumulo after they went to court challenging Welshman Ncube’s leadership.
The case was not conducted until Parliament was desolved. Mutambara held on to his government position until the inclusive government.