The Nelson Chamisa-led MDC Alliance yesterday demanded that government should lift the ban on by-elections, which it imposed citing COVID-19 prevention measures.
The opposition party said authorities should allow the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) to hold by-elections after it lost over 50% of its parliamentary seats to recalls.
Parliament on Wednesday announced the recall of six MDC Alliance MPs, including Public Accounts Committee (PAC) chairperson Tendai Biti (Mt Pleasant), Settlement Chikwinya (Mbizo), Willias Madzimure (Kambuzuma), Regai Tsunga (Mutasa South), Kucaca Phulu (Nkulumane) and Sichelesile Mahlangu (Pumula) at the behest of the People’s Democratic Party.
This has resulted in 48 recalls since last year. While 15 seats for proportional representation MPs have been filled, several other seats need to be filled through by-elections.
The MDC Alliance garnered 88 seats in the National Assembly in the 2018 elections and recalls have weakened the opposition party.
MDC Alliance spokesperson Fadzayi Mahere yesterday said Zec should expedite the holding of by-elections.
“Zec has a constitutional obligation to hold elections and we have continuously stated that these should be held without delay. MPs have been selected by the people and the continued disregard for this social contract constitutes the greatest betrayal of the people. It undermines the democratic process and further weakens an already frail electoral system. Zimbabweans must not be shaken. We know worse is coming,” she said.
“We see clear connivance with Zanu PF surrogates to usurp the will of the people. The recall of Biti fully exposes the malicious intent of these recalls as he has been targeted for his role in outing corruption through PAC.
“The brazen capture of Parliament is a dangerous low by the regime. They have reduced Parliament to a circus, tainted it with Mnangagwa’s legitimacy crisis and deprived the people of legitimate representation.”