By TARIRO MASUNDA/OWN CORRESPONDENT
IN a move aimed at inspiring more profound public awareness of the correct party stance to be cascaded to the communities, MDC Alliance president Nelson Chamisa has put in place measures focused on instilling discipline by encouraging members to adhere to the party’s communications protocol, sources revealed to Zim Community News.
Chamisa was also reported to be strengthening the internal party-deliberation processes using the party’s communications protocol through which members and supporters aired their views, but allowing designated party leaderships not individual personalities, to be the main drivers of the party’s policy positioning process on substantive issues.
MDC Alliance secretary-general Charlton Hwende was reported in the media confirming the party constitution was clear that only the president, secretary-general, his deputy and spokesperson could speak on behalf of the party.
Chamisa recently appointed Fadzayi Mahere as the party spokesperson signalling that he was rewarding excellence in the party.
A highly-placed source in the opposition party rubbished reports that the Alliance leader had gagged the party fearing that some senior members were becoming too influential to the extent of being a threat to his leadership, but said Chamisa was instead defining its policy stances in a way that would appeal to Zimbabweans.
“Message discipline is very important particularly for very big organisations like ours. We can’t have a situation where anyone just expresses their opinions, not party positions.
“Our communications department will make the public aware of our position that would have come out of inclusive internal deliberation processes.
“If anyone wants to express their opinions that are not party positions they can do that for their families, we have party positions that are first expressed through our communications departments.”
Former Information Minister and Zanu PF spokesperson now turned Alliance sympathizer Professor Jonathan Moyo also reacted to the reports that the Alliance was gagging party officials from speaking their own views on social media platforms saying that would expose Chamisa as a “Stalinist and control freak” who restricted messaging to a select group of party apparatchiks.
Moyo added that what was critical in political party communication was a disciplined messaging that promoted many voices speaking one message.
Hwende, was reported in the media confirming the latest development saying the gag order was consistent with the MDC Alliance’s constitution.
He added that the correct position was that the opposition party was coming up with a social media protocol for the party because it could not regulate individuals’ social media accounts.