Latest News Editor's Choice

Opinion / Columnist

Global Witness rule out free elections - not as long as ZDF looting in Marange continues

18 Apr 2018 at 06:20hrs | Views
Global Witness add their name to those ruling out any hope of Zimbabwe holding free, fair and credible elections without first implementing the democratic reforms given the military involved in the present regime and their involvement in the looting in Marange.

"Global Witness has long probed the relationship between the security forces and diamonds, given the potential impact on Zimbabwe's human rights record and democratic functioning," reported New Zimbabwe.

"Alongside the CIO connection, we set out in our 2017 investigation extensive evidence that the military were also a major beneficiary of Marange diamonds. The military's power in Zimbabwe has been made highly visible in recent months through their role in the "soft coup" that saw Mugabe ousted and the installation of Emmerson Mnangagwa.

"In a further sign of the immense political power the defence forces wield, the new cabinet includes Perence Shiri and Sibusiso Moyo both formerly senior security force figures, while new Vice-President Constantino Chiwenga, retired as Commander of the Defence Forces to take up his post."

Anyone who thinks the November coup was about ending the Zanu PF dictatorship is naïve. It was about making sure the Joint Operation Command junta stopped Mugabe handing over power to his wife and the G40 faction. Having secured power these thugs will never give it up. They have the looted wealth and the murderous past to protect.

"Apparently, representatives from the Defence Forces defied a summons to attend the parliamentary hearing earlier this week. Whether they will submit to any questioning at all remains to be seen. President Mnangagwa has been trumpeting anti-corruption and a new era of economic recovery since his inauguration," continued the report.

"A public explanation by the army of their interests in the diamond mining industry would be a sign that these moves are serious and indiscriminate."

President Mnangagwa was himself named in the UN reported as one of the Zimbabwe leaders involved in the looted of minerals in the DRC following the deployment of Zimbabwe soldiers in that country in 1998. He cannot rein in any of his military thugs looting in Marange, after all they are only playing catch-up!

If we are serious about ending the de facto Zanu PF dictatorship that has ruled this nation with an iron fist, then we must demand the implementation designed to break the umbilical code tying Zanu PF to the Army and other State institutions, to end the party's unfettered access to state resources, etc.   BEFORE the elections.

The elections taking place right now are flawed and illegal, the whole process is a waste of time and resources and must be declared null and void. Without reforms, it is impossible to hold free and fair.

All articles and letters published on Bulawayo24 have been independently written by members of Bulawayo24's community. The views of users published on Bulawayo24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Bulawayo24. Bulawayo24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.