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Zimbabwe Eelections Commission must explain this?

24 Apr 2023 at 07:31hrs | Views
Dear SADC Electoral Advisory Council,

A few days after concluding your pre-election assessment mission to Zimbabwe, the Zimbabwe Elections Commission (ZEC), a body that is supposed to be independent, has been caught with its hands in the cookie jar. A video from a Zanu PF rally shows Zanu PF officials telling the crowd that ZEC secretariat was available at the party rally to register people who had not registered to vote. How can the country have a free and fair election when a supposedly independent body is used as a willing tool to give an advantage to another player?

And as revealed by a local newspaper, ZEC has been working on instruction from Zanu PF to secretly register Zanu PF supporters, a fact admitted by the Zanu PF Secretary for Information and Publicity Christopher Mutsvangwa.

ZEC has to explain this, and should henceforth desist from so doing. Opposition parties, civic society, and concerned individuals must record and report all incidents of electoral practice violations to the SADC Electoral Advisory Council as soon as they are noticed.  

It is interesting that all these unethical things happen in front of President Mnangagwa and he doesn't raise a finger but actually promotes the unethical practice. Going back to the 2018 election campaign, Chief Fortune Charumbira did what he does second best: addressing a rally where Mnangagwa was the main speaker, telling all traditional leaders must support and campaign for Zanu PF. Charumbira was arraigned before the High Court where he was ordered to issue a public apology for claiming that traditional leaders belonged to Zanu PF, but he refused to offer the apology, obviously knowing he has the backing of President Mnangagwa. Of cause Fortune Charumbira is best at sexually abusing women as recently exposed through an audio recording in which his voice is clearly recognizable trying to sexually force himself on his niece.

Just recently, Zanu PF Vice-President Kembo Mohadi repeated the claim that all Chiefs, Headmen, and Village Heads must commandeer villagers to polling stations and ensure they voted for Zanu PF. This was said in the presence of the President, and all he can do is smile at such illegal and unconstitutional commands.

The election violations that are happening in Zimbabwe are happening because the country has no leadership. President Mnangagwa has failed to uphold his constitutional responsibilities as he opts to be a player when he is supposed to show leadership.

SADC and all other observers who will observe Zimbabwe's 2023 elections should keep an eye on the ball and concentrate on the rural areas where Zanu PF is intimidating citizens and coercing them to vote for the ruling party. Let the people exercise their democratic rights without any pressure.

So far, the pre-election environment cannot produce a credible election result, but SADC and all other players should do their best to correct things that can be corrected before the election. Elections that are not credible reduce the credibility of not only SADC but the entire of Africa.

Kennedy Kaitano

Source - Kennedy Kaitano
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