One of the 23 presidential candidates, Violet Mariyacha the founding president of United Democratic Movement left the party in shambles as she left for the UK as soon as she lost in the election.
Although the chances of winning the opposition were very slim, Mariyacha might have contributed to her own downfall. Speculations highlight that there was so much disorder in the party which later led to party members to leave as well. The backbone of the party consisted of vice president Victor Ngwaladi Mpofu and former spokesperson, Morgan Mpiyezwe Nare and these left on a short notice because of disorder and a lot of empty promises. Mariyacha as the founding president must have made an effort to solve problems in the party but she did not make any.
The bedroom became the boardroom
Violet claims that she founded the party in the 1990s but the party has nothing to show for it and the party’s spokesperson Gerber Ngwere highlighted that it formed last in March. All the operations they conducted before and during the elections, they were conducting mobile because they never had offices. Mariyacha’s bedroom turned into a boardroom where she did all her paperwork all by herself. Party members allude that this bedroom operation led to lack of transparency. The party executives only met twice since the party was formed up to to the election day. Due to the fact that they had no offices, the executives could not meet on regular basis.
According to Gerber Ngwere, the party’s spokesperson, Mariyacha focked out thousands for useless things. He added that Mugadza and Mariyacha joined politics to pocket money and feed their families. He also highlighted that Mariyacha only wanted to make a name for herself and seek funding for her businesses. Ngwere alludes that there is future for UDM but without Mariyacha and Mugadza as they having a meeting this week to discuss the party’s way forward and paving way for 2023. “I did not get anything in compensation. She even failed to say thank you, i am now going back to America, i wrote to her but she did not respond, i would like to believe that she blocked me on whatsapp.” Ngwere said.
Mariyacha also failed to follow their party constitution as she adopted the divide and rule tactic. The party was run by Mariyacha and her deputy, Pastor Phillip Mugadza, these two performed all the duties of all the posts in the party. An executive committee existed but it was not consulted as the president appointed office bearers without their consent.
20 t-shirts for 9 wards
UDM also operated on what could be a zero budget. The party managed to come up with 5 contesting MPs and 4 councilors out of 210 constituencies. All these are believed to have lost due to working without a budget. Mugova who has assumed the positioned of an acting president was never given campaigning funds and e only managed to use $450 in 10 wards in Chikomba central. UDM also failed to pay their 20 election agents who are still on Mugova’s case demanding their reward. The spokesperson, Gerber Ngwere was also deprived of his remuneration he is believed to have been given less than $500 and 20 t-shirts to cover 9 wards in Buhera.
A lot of questions have been raised on whether Mariyacha contested for the love of politics or she used the party to boost her business in the UK.