Deputy Prime Minister; Vice-President of the Movement for Democratic Change-Tsvangirai
Date of Birth: 18/11/1963
Place of Birth: Bulawayo
Career: Zimbabwe Amalgamated Railway Union, 1987-99; Secretary, Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions Women’s Advisory Council, 1991; Secretary for Transport and Logistics, Movement for Democratic Change, 1999-05; Member of Parliament, Makokoba, 2000-; Vice-President, Movement for Democratic Change-Tsvangirai, 2006-; Deputy Prime Minister, 2009-.
Commentary: Khupe was a founder member of the Movement for Democratic Change having gone through the labour movement where she was first a member of the Zimbabwe Amalgamated Railway Union and then the umbrella body the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions. A Member of Parliament for Makokoba constituency, her birth place, since 2000, Khupe was catapulted to the top when the MDC split in 2005 and Gibson Sibanda, then party Vice-President, left with Welshman Ncube. Her elevation was considered cosmetic as she was one of the few Ndebele left within the Tsvangirai faction. The fact that she was a woman was an added advantage. Khupe is still considered a political lightweight despite her high post but is reported to be working behind the scenes with ambitious MDC secretary-general Tendai Biti . In the process she has split the party in Bulawayo along tribal lines, something that could give advantage to the resuscitated Zimbabwe African People’s Union led by former intelligence supremo Dumiso Dabengwa. Party leader Morgan Tsvangirai is, however, reported to be aware of her machinations but is reportedly allowing her to hang herself.