'Zec wants to cover-up fraud'

HARARE - Morgen Komichi, the MDC chief elections officer, alleged yesterday Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) officials crafted an offence leading to his arrest.

Komichi was arrested in July, accused of fraud and contravening the Electoral Act.

This was after he presented to the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec), a ballot paper that was allegedly picked from a dustbin at the Harare International Conference Centre (HICC), the electoral body’s command centre.

Komichi told the court during cross examination by prosecutor Michael Mugabe that when a meeting was convened to present the ballot paper envelopes issue, Zec  hatched a plan to get him arrested.

“Zec hatched a plan to implicate me in a crime I did not commit.

“When I got to the meeting they started going through Electoral Act documents and internet looking for an offence they would label against me,” he said.

“They found a section where being in possession of open ballot paper was an offence and connived to get me arrested. They knew that since I was alone against their numbers it would be my word against them even if the matter was to be heard in court.”

Mugabe questioned Komichi’s delay in alerting Zec about the issue and said the latter was “scheming to discredit Zec and the elections”.

“I received the papers on July 23 and managed to address the issue with Zec on July 25 because I had other urgent matters to attend in Mutare,” Komichi shot back.

“I also didn’t want the matter discussed on the phone because it was crucial.

“Besides it would not have helped us as a party to do anything malicious. Everything that I did was in good faith.”

Komichi said he was surprised when a meeting was later convened to discuss the issue after top government officials were called in.

“When I was called for a meeting I was surprised to see Makarau in the company of commissioner Gambe, Sekeramayi, Mutemasango, Chidhakuza and many others,” he said.

His lawyer Alec Muchadehama claims Zec failed to handle the July election process, resulting in some ballot papers going missing.

Allegations are that on July 25 at HICC, Komichi approached Tendayi Pamire asking to have an audience with Zec chairperson Rita Makarau after a ballot envelope was found in a rubbish bin outside the command centre.

The State alleges that Komichi accused Zec of destroying ballot papers of members of the uniformed forces who voted for the Morgan Tsvangirai-led MDC.

According to State papers, the envelope belonged to Constable Mugove Chiginya, a police officer supposed to have voted for the MDC in the Southerton constituency.

The court heard Chiginya, however, failed to vote during the special voting period.

Comments (10)

ZEC ine nyaya.

Hazvie - 25 October 2013

It pains to be locked-up especially when you know that you are innocent. There are people who have committed serious crime in this country ranging from murder, assault, rape stealing public funds, stealing from government coffers up to diamonds but they have never been locked up even for a single day nor investigated. So we say time will tell. Komichi always remember that such is African politics. Mandela, Jacob Zuma, va Nkomo, VaMugabe kana VaMuzenda were once locked-up. You are being made prominent. Wapinda muhushe sahwira. Usazo kanganwe grassroots please ndapota. Everyday we pray for you. May God remember you in these times. Ndatenda hangu. Forgive your enemies but do not forget there names

Shava - 25 October 2013

Strong words from Hazvie

elimond - 25 October 2013

and also from Shava

elimond - 25 October 2013

Rita Makarau must pay some day for her betrayal of the nation in return for some pieces of Silver. The day and time will one day come although we do not know when.

oliver wkwaMutare - 25 October 2013

Hazvie and company - Komicho was a very high ranking election official and to make believe that he stayed with the papers for two days because he had other pressing issues when in fact the very issue carried more weight than any other at election time , is actually insulting people intelligence. If it is true that he did all this in good faith then he should have not been given that electoral post. The truth is that Komicho is making his political party a laughing stalk.

dungas - 25 October 2013

They might arrest and persecute innocent people but will never kill the spirit of revival when it aproaches, Chisingaperi chinoshura and the prosecuter in this matter is the President's nephe? Do we see any fairness in the trial?

Shepy Tarzy - 25 October 2013

interesting!!! if the ballot in the bin was in favour of ZANU PF was Komichi going to report?. what is the probability that a senior election officer will go through rubbish in a at a hotel?? ...and conveniently finds a S.ballot ......,coincidentally in favor of his party??? . conveniently no-one witnessed this...and the Phiri guy is nowhere to be found. Komichi' "others" file an urgent court application mins after notifying ZEC,. help me understand this readers. smells like a plot to me.

mwana wevhu - 26 October 2013

These are BIG IF's. Why should you concern yourself with an if when the facts are on the ground. Guys let's admit the facts, it was apparent, and has always been so, that our electoral, judicial, security institutions are all subrepted. Search and prove my assertion wrong. If subrepted, then it is not a miracle at all that a ballot was found. Ok. Would it surprise you that it happened, when Kazembe boastfully said even if 20 people with fake ballots were found in Hatefield, 20 is two small to discredit the electoral process. It's acknowledged, right? Which between the two is much easier to do, throwing a ballot in the bin, and having people running a parallel polling/electoral process in broad day light? I think Zimbabweans have bewitched themselves into petty debates. The point, and very fundamental is why ZEC has not been brought to book. If you track Makarau's statements since the day the ballot issue was in the public domain, a discernible shift in the discourse cannot be denied, and here we busy ourselves asking petty questions like Mwana weVhu is doing.

Mar Ire Commons - 26 October 2013

Hazvie -----Thank you so for your encouraging words.......the party of Excellency will remain resolute.......infect the vanguard group is regrouping with much tenacity.........victory is certain!

Steel Wire - 28 October 2013

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