By Obert Gutu
The MDC is a social democratic political party that firmly believes in the full and total re – integration of Zimbabwe into the international comity of nations.
Zimbabwe cannot afford to remain as a reclusive pariah state whilst the rest of the world is moving closer together by forming progressive regional and international alliances that foster political stability and socio – economic growth and integration.
Thus, we shall continue to vigorously pursue a diplomatic thrust that is deliberately targeted at stabilising our beloved country politically, economically, morally and socially. In fact, it is a truism that Zimbabwe needs the world more than the world needs Zimbabwe.
To enable Zimbabwe to be fully re – integrated into the global community, there are certain essential deliverables that have to be discharged. First and foremost, we should be able to conduct free and fair elections that do not give rise to disputed and contested results.
We sincerely hope and trust that the Zimbabwe government under President Emmerson Mnangagwa shall honestly work towards the cultivation of a conducive political environment that will guarantee the holding of free and fair elections in 2018.
In this respect, therefore, we demand that the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) should be adequately capacitated to enable them to run credible, free and fair elections next year. We also look forward to a situation whereby the military shall promptly return to the barracks in order to avoid the perception that Zimbabwe is now a military state that is being run by a military junta.
Of course, we are acutely aware of the fact that more often than not, perception can easily be deduced as reality. In addition, the MDC also calls upon the freeing of the State – owned print and electronic media to enable all political players to have free and unfettered access, in tandem with the dictates of the Constitution of Zimbabwe.
Traditional leaders should abide by their constitutional mandate of being apolitical. The ruling party should not abuse the institution of traditional leadership by directly and indirectly converting traditional leaders into de facto political commissars of the ruling party.
The MDC shall continue to respect the institution of traditional leadership and in fact, we call upon the implementation of programs that adequately remunerate all traditional leaders in order to maintain their dignity and respectability.
As a patriotic and homegrown political party,the MDC doesn’t call for the imposition of sanctions against the Republic of Zimbabwe. We would like to participate in the socio – economic regeneration of our beloved motherland and as such, sanctions remain an anathema in our political discourse. The government of Zimbabwe should allow all its citizens to enjoy their fundamental rights and liberties as fully provided for by the Constitution of Zimbabwe.
Political parties should be given the leeway and latitude to lawfully go about their day to day activities without any undue interference and/or hindrance by any organ of the State.
Obert Chaurura Gutu is the MDC-T National Spokesperson