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Zanu-PF clashes with CCC over foreign Election Observer Missions' recommendations

by Staff reporter
18 Feb 2024 at 09:22hrs | Views
Zanu-PF and Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) lawmakers are in disagreement regarding the implementation of recommendations from foreign Elections Observer Missions regarding the necessity for comprehensive electoral and political reforms by the government.

During discussions on the recently presented Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) report concerning the contested 2023 elections, Zanu-PF Member of Parliament (MP) Tafadzwa Mugwadi expressed reservations about rushing into reforms solely based on the observations of the observer missions.

He cautioned against blindly accepting the reports and suggestions of observer missions, suggesting that they could potentially ignite controversy.

Mugwadi stated, "My concern regarding the report is that some of these observer missions arrive with predetermined conclusions about a crucial national process, which evokes strong emotions within the Republic. Therefore, we need to be cautious in accrediting observer missions in the future."

"For too long, we have received numerous recommendations from various sources, and while we consider them, we must remember the saying, 'he is a fool who does not take advice from anyone, but he is a thousand times foolish who takes advice from everyone.' The people of Zimbabwe and our leadership are not foolish. We are clear about that. This Parliament is not a Parliament of fools. Therefore, when it comes to recommendations and conclusions about our elections from these observer missions, this sovereign August House must have the authority to reject observations we deem unfavorable and refuse to legislate upon them. It is our sovereign right," Mugwadi emphasized.

Last year, Foreign Election Observer missions criticized the electoral process, citing its failure to meet regional and international electoral standards.

The reports from the observer missions urged Zimbabwe to align its electoral laws with the Constitution to ensure future elections meet credibility standards.

Responding to the ZEC report, CCC legislator Ellen Shiriyedenga argued that only through reforms could the country hold undisputed elections.

"In terms of recommendations, I believe it is essential for ZEC to adopt the suggestions from election observer missions, and we should engage in discussions on those recommendations as stakeholders. We need to evaluate ZEC's performance in line with its mandate and the ground reality. Ultimately, an election that lacks principles of being free, fair, and credible casts doubt on its legitimacy," Shiriyedenga emphasized.

Source - newzimbabwe