HARARE – Under fire MDC-T leader Douglas Mwonzora has been accused of awarding himself a fat $84,000 bonus from a government grant recently parceled out to his party under the Political Parties Finance Act.
Together with Zanu PF, MDC-T recently shared $1, 4 billion government windfall for 2023.
The money is shared proportionally to parties that attain at least 5 percent of the vote after every election.
Disgruntled employees have accused the controlling politician of pocketing 20 percent of the dividend, something viewed as obscene for a party struggling to pay its employees.
Among the employees is Mutandwa Machera, who has boldly confronted the party leader for allegedly looting the public grant when he was being owed a huge sum in wage arrears.
Machera said the 20 percent payout to the party leader is an old system once afforded to founding MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai who was considered for the tranche for being employed only as the party leader.
Tsvangirai’s successors who include Thokozani Khupe and Nelson Chamisa reportedly declined the money insisting the party should benefit instead.
Mwonzora, according to Machera, has since reinstated the payout, creaming off a sumptuous $84,000 from the $422 million tranche disbursed to MDC-T by treasury.
“Mwonzora took 20 percent from the government grant that was given to the party,” said the party employee.
“This 20 percent was initially given to Morgan Tsvangirai after the party realised he was ill and had no other source of income as his sole job was leading the party.
“The standing committee agreed to give him 20 percent.
“When President Chamisa took over, he said since he was a lawyer and a member of parliament, he saw no need to take 20 percent.
“When Khupe became leader, she also said the same, stating that she was party president with benefits; therefore, she would not require the 20 percent.
“However, when Douglas Mwonzora came in, he started taking the 20 percent purportedly for his welfare as party president.
“He did this with us workers not getting salaries for over one year.”
Reached for comment, Mwonzora referred this publication to the MDC-T secretary general, who was however unreachable for comment.
Efforts to contact national chairperson Morgen Komichi were also fruitless as his mobile phone was not reachable.
Party’s spokesperson Witness Dube had also not responded to questions sent to him via his mobile.-Zimlive