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'Zimbabwe elections a waste of time'

by Staff reporter
06 Jul 2017 at 06:24hrs | Views
The government's failure to implement electoral reforms and create a conducive environment for free, fair and credible elections makes the 2018 polls a futile academic excise, a leading political scientist has said yesterday.

Southern Africa Political and Economic Series director, Ibbo Mandaza told a University of Zimbabwe elections symposium that there was no need for Zimbabweans to be "hauled" through elections because of lack of conditions to have fair polls.

"Electoral malpractices in Zimbabwe legitimise the illegitimate. If we are to have elections, we need to reform State institutions," he said.

Mandaza, who has been leading calls for a National Transitional Authority, in his presentation, accused State media of being captured, saying it would not be helpful in the polls.

"State media is polarised, it has been taken over by Lacoste. It's a mess," he said in reference to a Zanu-PF faction reportedly pushing for Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa to succeed President Robert Mugabe.

Mandaza's call comes as the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) also insisted that Zimbabweans living in the Diaspora and electoral officers would not vote, saying the law only provided for polling station-based voting.

Zec commissioner, Qhubani Moyo insisted that there would be no postal voting and deployment of those on duty on polling day would be determined by voting stations.

"Diaspora voting is limited by the law, which speaks to polling station-based voting. There needs to be review of the law to include the Diaspora," he said.

However, human rights lawyer and former Education minister, David Coltart dismissed the submission, saying the Constitution was clear on voting rights.

"What a load of nonsense – the Constitution makes it quite clear that all citizens over 18, wherever they live, are entitled to vote," he shot back.

The Elections Resource Centre was also quick to point out that Moyo was offside in his remarks because the Constitution was clear.

Source - newsday

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