Latest News Editor's Choice

News / National

ACT-SA Urges political parties to refrain from vote buying ahead of August 23 elections

by Stephen Jakes
26 Jul 2023 at 20:10hrs | Views
After the launch of the "National Citizen Action against Vote Buying Campaign", the Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-SA) received overwhelming responses from members of the public forwarding pictorial and video evidence of vote buying by politicians fighting for seats ahead of  August 23 Zimbabwean election.

The main political party implicated in vote buying with impunity is the Zanu PF.

"We will cite a few examples received from our whistleblowers: The issue of giving residents of informal settlements such as Epworth, Title Deeds is deemed as vote buying since it has been timed with the coming election and also that it is being marketed by Zanu PF instead of the relevant line ministry," ACT SA director Obert Chinhamo said.

"The drilling of boreholes country-wide that has also been made to coincide with the elections and the strategy to drill these boreholes in areas where Zanu PF will be conducting its rallies. See Attached, the US$1 million loan facility to SMEs and free buses offered by Scott Sakupwanya to residents of Mabvuku where he is contesting the Mabvuku Parliamentary Seat."

He said in the Chiredzi Central Constituency, the Ward 5 Councillor distributed rice to voters in exchange for votes.

"The dishing out of books, food and cement by July Moyo who is contesting the Redcliff Constituency seat . See the attached Picture and Song praising the vote buying. ACT-SA is gravely concerned considering that vote buying as a form of bribery is illegal in line with  Section 136 (1) (h) of the Electoral Act [Chapter 2:13] . Furthermore, Section 6 (f) and (g) of the Political Parties Code of Conduct prohibits bribery," he said.

"It states that "No political party or any of its members or supporters, and no candidate or any of his or her supporters, may - (f) bribe a voter to exercise his or vote in a particular manner; (g) bribe or intimidate an election official to induce him or her to make a false entry in the voters roll or to alter or falsify election results."

He said more worrying is inaction by law enforcement agents and regulatory authorities that include the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP), the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) and the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC), especially when these acts are committed by the ruling Zanu PF political party.

"The inaction speaks a lot about the extend or degree of capture of these institutions by the ruling Zanu PF political party.  ACT-SA condemns the extent to which vote buying is being celebrated and in some extreme cases songs sung praising vote buyers as evidenced through the case of  July Moyo who is contesting the Redcliff Constituency seat," he said.

"Zimbabweans have also condemned housing loans given to Judges. The loans have largely been perceived as bribes to ensure that courts of law rule in favour of Zanu PF against the opposition and pro-democracy activists in the event that electoral disputes are taken to court before and after the announcement of the electoral outcome."

Source - Byo24News
More on: #Zanu_PF, #ZACC, #ACT-SA