By Nomusa Garikai- All candidates will be charged the following fees presidential US$20 000 up from US$ 1 000, MP US$1 000 up from US$100 and senator and councillor US$200 from no charge.
The fees will discourage “chancers” according to a ZEC official. I think there is a more sinister motive behind the announcement!
There are four things one can be absolutely certain about Zanu PF regarding these 2023 elections:
a) After 42 years in power and with the country is total meltdown, the ordinary people are so desperate for change, “they would vote for a donkey if Mnangagwa and the donkey were the only names on the ballot!” to paraphrase Professor Jonathan Moyo. That is, if elections were free which they are not.
b) Zanu PF is blatantly rigging these elections by which I mean the party is not just using a loaded dice but one with 6s on all six sides. They want a 6, they will throw a 6!
c) As much as Zanu PF feels it has no choice but to rig these elections to stay in power, the party knows that the opposition must fully participate in these flawed and illegal elections if it is to get political legitimacy from its SADC and AU compeers.
Zanu PF suffered the humiliation of being forced to accept a GNU in 2008 when the regional and continental bodies, for the first ever, refused to endorse that year’s blatantly rigged elections.
So Zanu PF is once again blatantly rigging the elections, on the one hand. On the other, the party is doing everything to ensure as many in the opposition participate.
Mugabe saw to it that the opposition were allowed to win a few gravy train seats in elections since 2013; no more clean sweep win for Zanu PF. Mnangagwa has since added to this by creating POLAD to reward the losing presidential candidates.
d) Mischief! Zanu PF leaders are devious and manipulative. Like T S Elliot’s Macavity the mystery cat, when you think Zanu PF is fast asleep, they are wide awake!
So why would Zanu PF, who are blatantly rigging the 2023 elections and are as keen as mustard to see as many opposition parties participate in the flawed and illegal process to get legitimacy, shoot themselves in the foot by charging these exorbitant fees certain to force many out of the rat race?
Answer! The exorbitant election candidate fees hike is just a decoy.
Whilst the many political opposition players and critics alike have been venting their outrage at the fees; they are not talking about the real big issues such as failure to produce a verified voters roll and many other blatant vote rigging shenanigans.
Zanu PF used the white farm invasion as a diversional tactic in the period 2000 to 2015, for example. The farm invasions, “jambanja” as the locals called them, flared up towards elections with the accompanying gratuitous violence directed at the white farmers and their workers but always ended up spilling over to encompass all suspected opposition supporters in rural and urban centres. Jambanja was just a smoke screen to hide the nationwide violence against the regime’s political opponents country wide.
Zanu PF is blatantly rigging the 2023 elections and will stop at nothing to draw attention away from the rigging. Watch out!