Presiding over an election is a trust issue, ZEC just doesn’t have it
By Jacob Mafume
The People’s Democratic Party expresses its concern on the way ZEC is handling the procurement of the BVR equipment.
The public outcry over the allocation of the BVR tender to Laxton is mainly motivated by the knowledge that ZEC is captured and therefore acts to the advantage of ZANUPF.
The democratic contingent is aware of the fact ZEC continues to be manned by a plethora of Central Intelligence Organisation some of whom are responsible for perpetrating heinous crimes against our people. Most of the Commissioners are compromised they either have direct links with ZANUPF or have held senior ZANUPF positions before.
The confliction of these individuals with no doubt makes it impossible for the opposition to believe that they independently adjudicated the BVR tender process.
Beyond this point the PDP reiterates the fact that the technical issues around how the data servers will be procured, kept and monitored remain obscured.
We cannot therefore rule out the conniving of this Chinese company with other election manipulation agencies like NIKUV which puts voters roll data at the risk of manipulation.
Zimbabwe has gone through cycles of rigged and stolen elections, the voters roll has perpetually been an instrument of electoral manipulation. This has preserved a crisis of legitimacy and the governance of the country by an unpopular elite whose basis of existence has been coercion and fear.
ZANU PF has continuously manipulated the electoral process and the current BVR process is testimony to their lack of will to reform. ZEC is a captured and emasculated institution, laws governing the elections are flawed, ZANU PF through ZEC disregards the constitution.
This has seen the reproduction of ZANU PF’s predatory, militarized and undemocratic rule based on patronage and crony capitalism as the main outcome of the many Zimbabwean elections.
As we mention in the Agenda for Restoration and Rehabilitation of Electoral Sustainability (ARREST) the way ZEC has handled in elections has killed belief in electoral processes as a key component of a constitutional democracy.
As a result apathy has since become the default setting of many Zimbabweans; part of the manifestation is the emergence of a state of hopelessness and fatalism which has seen the citizen finding refugee in extreme religious movements, the occult, social and domestic vices.
We restate the fact that modern functional states are governed through a liberal democratic construct in respect of which the citizenry is free to elect the leadership. Free, fair and regular elections empower the citizen to be the master over a political elite which left on its own will pursue narrow anti- people agendas.
While elections have been regular in Zimbabwe they have not been credible ,by default left the ZANU PF power mongers to pursue a ZANU PF agenda of self-aggrandisement up to a level where some own mansions bigger than complex one at the University of Zimbabwe, another one owns half of Victoria Falls while Mugabe himself affords to rent an apartment for half a million, his spokesperson having the guts to say he was being a responsible father.
Grace Mugabe has been in the headlines on reports of shopping disputes including a controversial purchase of a diamond ring for over a million dollars.
These are just but a reflection of ZEC’s failure to afford the people of Zimbabwe their constitutional right to periodically use an election as a mechanism to hold the executive accountable and punish the culprits.
We therefore demand an Independent Electoral Board at the least an overhaul of the electoral authority, otherwise the current processes are just but a wild goose chase.
Together Another Zimbabwe is Possible