MDC withdraws

HARARE - MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai has withdrawn his presidential petition, citing doubts on prospects of getting a fair court ruling after the Electoral Court reserved indefinitely his request to get poll material from the election body.

Tsvangirai was contesting the July 31 election result, which saw president-elect Robert Mugabe winning by 61,09 percent, while he got 33,94 percent.

The MDC leader said the election was rigged and had filed a Constitutional Court application, seeking to nullify the result, which he withdrew yesterday.

In an affidavit lodged with the Con-Court yesterday, Tsvangirai said: “As at the time of deposing this affidavit (15:43 hours on Friday 16th August 2013), the judgment in the applications for materials had not been delivered.

This, in my view, seriously handicaps my prosecution of the petition and it has rendered it impracticable for me to proceed with same.”

Tsvangirai said the absence of the material he required from the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) means that he cannot meaningfully argue the case.

“At any rate, given that the hearing of the petition is set for tomorrow, Saturday (today) the 17th of August 2013, the grant of the urgent chamber application will be of no assistance to me as I will not have the time to plough through the considerable material that I desire to have regard to before hearing,” Tsvangirai said.

Tsvangirai also cited Mugabe’s comments and conduct in criticising his court application when he officiated at the Heroes Day celebrations as a factor that necessitated the withdrawal.

He said the presence of chief justice Godfrey Chidyausiku at the function swept his confidence on the outcome of the court case, adding that State media publicity of the case undermined the court process.

“This, sadly as far as I am concerned, entails that the Zimbabwe situation is far from resolved and on my part as the leader of my political party, I shall endeavour to use all democratic means to bring about the successful resolution to this issue,” Tsvangirai said.

Tsvangirai was demanding a fresh election, saying the vote did not meet the Southern African Development Community (Sadc)’s minimum standards for a fair vote — arguing the election was held in the absence of media and security reforms required for a free and fair vote.

But matters came to a head when his application to the Electoral Court seeking permission to get access to some materials and information from the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) suffered a setback after High Court judge Chinembiri Bhunu reserved ruling in the matter.

Without the election materials, Tsvangirai said he could not successfully challenge the results amid threats by Mugabe that “never will we go back on our victory”.

MDC spokesperson Douglas Mwonzora yesterday told a news conference at Harvest House, the MDC headquarters, that the party’s national executive committee was “extremely worried” about the way the court case was progressing.

“The executive noted with concern that judgment relating to the release of key material to be used in the election petition has been reserved. It therefore, appears unlikely that the material requested will be made available before the hearing of the Constitutional Court case,” Mwonzora said.

The MDC leader has since taken the election petition to a Sadc summit to be held today in Malawi’s capital Lilongwe.

Regional leaders will decide whether the election was free and fair, a move that effectively breaks an agreement brokered by the bloc after violent and disputed elections in 2008.

Mwonzora said the delay by Zec to avail the material the party is demanding may be to allow authorities to fix the voters’ roll.

He said the failure to get the election material will prejudice Tsvangirai in trying to prove his case and undermine the presidential challenge.

“We therefore express reservation on the credibility of the court process in the absence of this crucial evidence,” Mwonzora said.

“Given the above, it is extremely doubtful, whether the MDC will receive a fair hearing in this case.”

He said the Constitutional Court had ruled that no evidence will be led, which makes it also difficult for Tsvangirai to “expose the illegalities and irregularities that marred credibility and legitimacy of this election”.

Mwonzora said Tsvangirai intended to call Registrar General Tobaiwa Mudede to cross-examine him pertaining the voters’ roll.

In the Constitutional Court application, Tsvangirai had said that the voters’ roll was marred with duplication of names.

“I have studied and believe a report on an assessment of an earlier version of the voters’ roll (provided on 19th June 2013) by a local research organisation which demonstrated that 870 000 names had been duplicated on the voters’ roll,” Tsvangirai said.

He said the implication of the duplication showed that the voters’ roll was inflated and does not reflect the genuine number of registered voters.

“This flaw meant that when Zec printed an extra 2 million ballot papers, they were basing it on a grossly inflated and flawed voter register. The duplication of names and the extra ballot papers significantly raised the risk of multiple voting and unaccounted for ballots,” he said.

Tsvangirai said according to Zec, 206 901 voters were “assisted”, mostly by traditional leaders, who were under instructions to vote for Zanu PF, thereby acting in breach of the Constitution.

The MDC also said that teachers, headmasters and doctors were assisted to vote.

Tsvangirai also noted lack of transparency with regard to ballot papers, gross State media bias, bribery, rampant misuse of voter registration slips, turning away of voters at polling stations, intimidation and abuse of the special voting process as part of the irregularities that marred the election.

Comments (21)

Does this mean that all future elections in Zimbabwe will be rigged in favour of ZANU PF? Can any opposition party to ZANU PF , in future elections win against ZANU PF? The answer is that, all future elections in Zimbabwe will be rigged, and rigged and rigged, over and over again and again, and the courts will be in favour of the cheating and rigging of elections by ZANU PF . ZANU PF will win all future elections by cheating because they have now perfected their art of cheating and rigging elections by devious means. ZANU PF wants to rule Zimbabwe for ever. So people of Zimbabwe will never ever get a Democratic rule because all future elections will be rigged with violence or no violence and the elections will be seen as free and fair by the useless AU and SADC, and other African leaders , then China, Russia and all the communist and dictator ruled countries will congratulate all future rigged elections by ZANU PF and they will say, "The elections were free and fair!" Cry my beloved country ! ! !

Observer Weku Zimbabwe - 17 August 2013

The former Prime Minister , Morgan Richard Tsvangirai was "wise" to withdraw his ill-advised challenge and he should follow this by resigning from the MDC -T leadership considering that three times he failed to remove Mugabe from the country 's Presidency. The once -upon time (paivepo...dzepfunde) Prime Minister is a politically and morally ( many known women ) . Certainly his downfall can be blamed to his legal advisers particularly the unlearned counsel Mwonzora who had unwittingly gave him poisonous advice. Tsvangirai was a victim of his gullibility as he followed the writings of Baba Jukwa and the discredited journalist GIFT PHIRI who boldly wrote that Tsvangirai will win by 61 per cent.

Rabison Nyundo (THE HAMMER) - 17 August 2013

@Nyundo.You and your party did not win the election.You cheated the people of Zimbabwe and the world over.You have turned SADC into a region of Dictators.

chimwango - 17 August 2013

All future elections in Zimbabwe will be rigged by ZANU PF with outright millitary precision, with no questions asked. Now that ZANU Pf has won elections and even the council elections, will they manage to get work done? Will all our potholes , street lights, electricity and water problems be fixed?? Will all school leavers get jobs?? Will schools and universities improve?? Will the health sector improve?? Will the economy and many other problems that we have in Zimbabwe improve ?? If ZANU PF fails to deliver the goods as they have promised to , what will all Zimbabweans do?? Zimbabweans will do nothing , but to wait and see, "TINOTENDA MOMBE DZANWA DZA SWERA NEBENZI." (Which means that, If a mad man herds and takes charge of our cattle all day, people will doubt that the cattle will be given water to drink by the mad man). So we wait and see if ZANU PF will deliver the goods as promised or ZANU PF will turn out to be our "mad man" who herds and takes care of the cattle all day and will this "mad man" give our cattle water to drink? We wait and see.

Polit Beureau - 17 August 2013

Daily news you definetly wanted your man Tsvangirai to win shame sour loses the scorline reads it all ZANU PF 61% M D C T 33% the ref has blown the final whitsle and machinja cant stomach the massacre even if you go to heaven its written Robert G Mugabe anodzinga rufu neruoko he will rule this country until Kingdom Comes if you go to Hell it is written Richard Morgan "CHAMATAMA' Son of Satan a few will follow him so of cause Chamatama will always have followers

Colonel - 17 August 2013

Part 1 of comment - Here is what I wrote to one of the on-line newspapers on 20 December 2010:- If indeed this was MDC-T Elton Mangoma's plan to buy the security chiefs then it was as harebrained as it gets. Or the UN plan to try and buy out Mugabe is equally harebrained. Some of us know that we are under a military junta/dictatorship - Mugabe is just a front of the predatory junta and has to consult the military before he does most things that's why he does as he pleases. We have had nonsense about security sector reform - there's never going to be any reforms. Civilian parties [Zapu, Mavambo, MDC-T, MDC-M, Zanu(Ndonga), Toilet party (led by the helicopter engineer) and MDC99] should be very upfront with Sadc and AU and tell them we don't want to be ruled by a military junta/dictatorship. If the army in a country asserts that they will not accept any other party even if it wins and when the military are actively involved in the voting process with the connivance of the police force then that is a military regime or junta. The head of the army doesn't have to be President or the President of the country doesn't have to don military garb for it to be a military junta. Civilian parties are competing with a thinly-veiled military junta. Attempts should never be made to buy the military: it sets a bad precedence and perpetuates the nonsense. The military should not usurp civilian administration by hiding behind a civilian party's name or viceversa. Retired army personnel should be barred from any role(s) in civilian parties.

Chin - 17 August 2013

Part 2 of the comment - Here's a definition of a military dictatorship – A military dictatorship is a form of government where in the political power resides with the military. It is similar but not identical to a STRATOCRACY, a state ruled directly by the military. Holding elections in Zimbabwe right now is like a boxing match where one boxer is wearing a knuckle-duster under the boxing gloves and the other is just wearing normal gloves - no prizes for telling the outcome of such a match. The army is supposed to protect ALL citizens against foreign invasion not to underpin a civilian party and bully unarmed civilians. It's our taxes that pay and equip the army and they shouldn't turn their guns on civilians. This is the most important issue than the issues of governors etc. and the two MDCs should not have rushed to sign the so-called GPA with a Zanupf military junta when the issue of the military interference in civilian matters is relegated to security reforms. If what we have in Zimbabwe is not a military dictatorship [forget the GNU nonsense] someone will have to tell me what is a military dictatorship.

Chin - 17 August 2013

Tsvangirai did not lose. It is THE PEPLE OF ZIMBABWE. Call him all the names you want but the reality of Mugabe's legacy will hit you hard, more than before. Dear old Bob has no clue how to make Zimbabwe prosperous again. When was the last time you saw a capital project in Harare. All you get is litter everywhere you go, we drink dirty water, there is more darkness than light, education system is no longer our shining beacon it once was, our health delivery system collapsed decades ago, my own mother (same age as Mugabe) cannot survive without us her children providing money for private hospital care. What about those mothers that do not enjoy this priviledge, who protects them. All this and more are the reasons why people wanted change. They were hoping that a new administration will have a better vision. Obert Mpofu gets richer and fatter but good old Bob says absolutely nothing about it. Think hard my friends....

lovejones - 17 August 2013

the bottom line is that tsvangirai is so dull so these are the results imi mungatungamirirwe ne bofu you will never topple bob with this kind of leadership every election tabirwa saka nyika munobirwa futi

chana - 17 August 2013

I feel pity for the people who risk life and limb to vote for the MDCs because voting for MDCs is a waste of time: the MDCs will never unseat ZanuPF military. If there is a re-run in 2 months time or a recount of votes ZanuPF military will not allow the MDCs to assume power. In 2008 the ZanuPF military stopped MDC-T when Tsvangirai won in the initial stage and made sure people were terrorised in the run up to the run-off. The reason is because the MDCs have treated ZanuPF military dictatorship as a civilian party. In 2008 instead of MDC-T and Tsvangirai driving home their advantage they gave ZanuPF and Mugabe a lifeline. By the way Tsvangirai is the man who went around the world telling all Zimbabweans in the diaspora to come back home because things have changed! Does he still think so? What of sanctions - he was calling for sanctions to be lifted - what is his position now? The man is not clever at all.

Chin - 17 August 2013

Guys mistakes do happen, so let them regroup and live to fight another election. Those in diaspora will have to continue sending us money as i can not see factories opening any time soon.

Rumbidzai - 18 August 2013

Question: Was the 1979 election of Bishop Abel Muzorewa the most free and fair in the history of Zimbabwe? if so, it makes you think!

M Masterson - 18 August 2013

Anybody who support any MDC formation is just naïve and stupid.Anybody who says there is nothing done by ZANU PF for the past 33years is deaf ,dump and blind,in otherwords that person will never see anything good done by a blackman. Just look at what is happening in Egypt right now and the sponsors of MDC(USA and EU) saying its ok there,but in Zimbabwe no its not ok,why? Who is fooling who in this world?Hamadzangu don't be fooled just follow RG Mugabe and ZANU PF and forget about these pretenders.

Hapaz Hapanyengwi - 18 August 2013

Mugabe and zanu pf destroyed Zimbabwe. Since 1980 they have been looting the country`s resources enriching themselves. Remember ESAP and retrenchments? Remember the teachers` strike of 1990? the nurses` strike of 1996?Harare looting in 1998? Remember DRC? All this happened before MDC was formed. In fact MDC was formed to rescue the people of Zimbabwe from the hardships they were enduring. What new can we expect from ZANU PF? Tsvangirai did not lose the election but the ordinary Zimbabweans who are the majority and who do not have access to farms and companies have lost. Tsvangirai has a good life but my hopes of earning a decent salary are shattered. SUFFER CONTINUES

dexter madhodha - 18 August 2013

Mugabe, his army and teh Chinese government own most of the diamond mines and if Tsvangirai had won, these guys feared they would lose all those riches. So they had to rig the elections and steal the victory from Tsvangirai. These guys will not give up power at time from now until maybe all the diamonds are finished.

Kloyth - 18 August 2013

Zanu PF has dismally failed in the past 33 years and will continue in doing more damage to the land of milk and honey which was GOD GIVEN. ZPF fools continue to tell the people of ZIM ngano and to us this does not bring food on the table. Sekuru vakura vanodawo kuzorora asi imi mutotovabatira matemo kuti firapo. Zvino zvavachembera vakafirapo handiti tichaona matemo endudzi dzese here? Chipaiwoka mukana mai Mujuru avo vachiri kunzwa. ZIM yakanzi ndeya GUSHAZ here kana kuti ndeyeVANA veZimbagwe? Ndizvo zvakafira hama dzedu here matakanyanya iwaya? Tinodawo rugare nemagariro akanaka munyika yatakafirwa nehama neshamwari dzedu. Munosvikepi MAZANU kuramba muchimbunyikidza vanhu vasisakudei neumhondi neuori hwenyu? Please RGM and TEAM give us a break!! We are sick and tired of being led by sekuru of 90 years who continues to go to Singapore for facelifting and blood-overhaul.

Panoz Panonyengwa - 18 August 2013

Vapei Sando dzavo Gushungo! Hapana nguva refu dzichavaremera chete!! God is for us all and we shall keep-on praying for a better leader until AMEN!

SANDO KUNA SEKURU - 18 August 2013

Father Zim that is Nyongolo; Msika Mutema; Muzenda; Zvobgo the list is endless and it will continue to grow. Death will NEVER be RIGGED!!!

VANOFA VOSE CHETE - 18 August 2013

Father Zim that is Nyongolo; Msika Mutema; Muzenda; Zvobgo the list is endless and it will continue to grow. Death will NEVER be RIGGED!!!

VANOFA VOSE CHETE - 18 August 2013

Hapaz Hapanyengwi - matakadya kare haanyaradzi mwana. Zanu pf is all about history. Mugabe should retire and give history lectures to visiting students from all over the world. He is a teacher by profession and misses that. As for nation building, FORGET.

lovejones - 19 August 2013

our country was never of a hopeless people, we were full of vision and potential and we hoped to give life which is unconditional to our descendants until uncle Bob and his comrades decided to keep it all for themselves,anyway either way we have had enough of this dictatorship leader and our sore hearts and prayers will be answered one day, drink the milk while u can because u will never rig death.

peter - 19 August 2013

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