“How Can The Elections Be Free And Fair?”
6 January 2022
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By Patrick Guramatunhu- Zanu PF is blatantly rigging the 2023 elections!

“Zanu PF bigwigs, Chief Serima and members of the dreaded Central Intelligence Organization have instructed the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education to transfer a Gutu teacher for allegedly denouncing Mr Emmerson Mnangagwa,” reported Zimeye.

“Zanu PF MP for Gutu West Constituency, John Paradza also claims the teacher, Batsiranai Ngugama of Serima High School, is mobilizing the local community to vote against him.”

This is not only common occurrence, but worse things have happened to those considered a threat to Zanu PF’s strangle hold on power. Many opponents of the regime have been beaten, raped, had property destroyed and some have been murdered in cold blood.

In November last year, Nyasha Zhambe, a MDC activist was murdered by Zanu PF operatives for attending an MDC rally at Mupandawan Growth Point, less than 30 km from Serima High School. Nyasha named his assailants and yet to date no one has been arrested.

Rural areas are Zanu PF strongholds for no other reason than that the party has total control over the people’s lives, they are nothing short of medieval serfs beholden to the overbearing Zanu PF lords. The rural voters constitute 50% plus of the electorate.

How can the elections be free, fair and credible when 50% plus of the electorate are frog marched to vote one way?

The Police and CIO should not be turning a blind eye to Zanu PF thuggery much less be actively involved in the lawlessness. Zimbabwe’s elections should not be taking place without first implementing the democratic reforms to ensure the Police, CIO, etc. are free to carry out their duties of maintaining law and order and guarantee free and fair elections.  

Zimbabwe had the golden opportunity to implement the democratic reforms during the 2008 to 2013 GNU. Sadly, Morgan Tsvangirai and his MDC friends who were tasked to implement the reforms turned out to be breathtakingly corrupt and incompetent. They failed to implement even one reform in five years. Not even one reform!

Worse still, MDC leaders are the ones who have insisted in participating in these flawed and illegal elections in which rural voters are frog marched to vote for Zanu PF, with no verified voters’ roll, when 3 million (in 2023) Zimbabweans in the diaspora are denied the vote, etc.

By participating in these flawed elections, MDC has given Zanu PF legitimacy.

What has made this situation totally intolerable is that MDC leaders have known all along the futility of participating in flawed elections and readily admitted it.

“The worst aspect for me about the failure to agree a coalition was that both MDCs couldn’t now do the obvious – withdraw from the (2013) elections,” admitted David Coltart in his book, The Struggle Continues 50 years of Tyranny in Zimbabwe. Coltart was a MDC-N minister in the GNU.  

“The electoral process was so flawed, so illegal, that the only logical step was to withdraw, which would compel SADC to hold Zanu PF to account. But such was the distrust between the MDC-T and MDC-N that neither could withdraw for fear that the other would remain in the elections, winning seats and giving the process credibility.”

Four of the main MDC factions plus three other opposition parties did form a coalition, the MDC Alliance, and still participated in the 2018 elections. Proof it was greed not the failure to form a coalition that was forcing the MDC leaders participate in flawed elections.  

Indeed, it was greed that had stopped the MDC leaders implementing even one reform during the GNU.

“Mazivanhu eMDC adzidza kudya anyerere!” (MDC leaders have learned to enjoy the spoils of power and not rock the boat!) boasted Zanu PF cronies during the GNU when asked why MDC leaders were not implementing the reforms.

MDC leaders have repeatedly claimed that they have “winning in rigged elections strategies”; all hot air, of course. They said it to justify why they have been participating in the flawed and illegal elections and cover the real reason – greed.

With not even one token reform implemented since the 2018 elections; of course, Zanu PF is blatantly rigging the 2023 elections just readily as the party rigged the 2018 elections! The elections should be declared null and void and Zanu PF denied legitimacy.

However, there are some Zimbabweans who are hell bent on participating in these flawed elections; hell bent on giving Zanu PF legitimacy. Still, come the morning after the 2023 elections, no Zimbabwean with half a brain should ever be in any doubt about the following three things:

  1. That Zanu PF blatantly rigged the 2023 elections, the whole election process was not free, fair and credible.
  • That MDC leaders insisted in participating in these flawed elections out of greed; they knew their “winning in rigged elections strategies” were all hot air.
  • That by participating in the flawed elections Zimbabweans gave vote rigging Zanu PF legitimacy and thus extended the Zanu PF dictatorship’s rule – pretty dumb thing to do in this day and age, especially after four decades of rigged elections.