Zimbabwe News and Internet Radio

‘We’re tabling an electoral reform document before ZEC’: MDC Alliance

By Nyashadzashe Ndoro | Nehanda Politics |

The main opposition MDC Alliance will table a dossier containing electoral reforms before deciding on whether or not to participate in the upcoming 2023 national elections, its spokesperson Fadzayi Mahere told Nehanda Radio.

Nelson Chamisa with Fadzayi Mahere in May 2019
Nelson Chamisa with Fadzayi Mahere in May 2019

In an interview with this publication, Mahere said the opposition party had taken a consistent position that the electoral reform agenda is urgent.

Mahere added that MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa had called for the need of electoral reforms in the Agenda 2021 ahead of 2023 harmonised elections.

“President Nelson Chamisa alluded to this in detail during his presentation of the reforms component of our CITIZENS’ CONVERGENCE AGENDA 2021 document. We demand deep and systemic reforms to ZEC to avoid another disputed election in 2023,” she said.

“The institution and electoral playing field as they stand are tainted, damaged and must be reformed at their root. The Constitution must be upheld.

“Voter registration must be carried out sincerely and the delimitation process must be conducted transparently. We have engaged ZEC on all these issues and remain concerned at the lack of stakeholder engagement to take the reform agenda forward.”

“We have set out a comprehensive reforms road map in our PRICE (Principles for Reliable Inclusive and Credible Elections in Zimbabwe) document which contains our alternative policy position on elections. We are tabling it before ZEC with a view to pushing the conversation and driving change.”

Similar and serious sentiments were also expressed by the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition (CZC).

In a statement issued today the CZC alleges there are fears that 2023 elections may result in violence following a recent statement by President Emmerson Mnangagwa in which he urged war veterans to rally behind the ruling party in the upcoming 2023 elections.

“The President’s call to the war veterans raises fears of a violent election especially given the fact that war veterans aligned to the ruling party have a well known record and history of violence against opposition supporters.

“War veterans are on record pledging to go to war should Zanu PF lose in elections and this has largely been the basis of their violence and terror against opposition supporters.

“During the bloody 2008 election re-run, war veterans aligned to Zanu PF were among the perpetrators of the violence that led to the death of more than 200 opposition supporters.

“It is in light of this background that Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition implores the war veterans to ensure peace and tolerance in their involvement in the country’s political processes,” CZC said.

“The huge sense of entitlement on the part of the war veterans (which has also been their basis for political violence) is unacceptable in a democratic society.

“As Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition, we hope the President’s call for war veterans to mobilise and campaign for Zanu PF does not translate into reactivation of the ruling party’s violence machinery.

“On another note, Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition remains deeply concerned over the continued arbitrary arrests and incarceration of civic society and opposition activists as part of efforts by the ruling party to silence dissent.

“The continued arrests, which have been condemned by some sections of the international community, have put a huge dent on the country’s image and consequently, continue to work against efforts at re-engaging the international community.

“As Crisis Coalition, we reiterate that respect for democratic principles and upholding citizens’ fundamental rights enshrined in the constitution should form the basis for meaningful re-engagement with the international community,” read the statement. Nehanda Radio