People voted Zanu PF - Mafume

HARARE - Tendai Biti’s renewal team has upheld Robert Mugabe’s presidential election victory again, but the veteran leader’s defeated rival Morgan Tsvangirai insists the poll was rigged, igniting fresh tensions .

The July 31, 2013 vote cleared the way for Zimbabwe’s 90-year-old president to retain the top job.

Biti’s renewal team spokesperson Jacob Mafume delivered a statement at the Gweru Press Club on Thursday accepting the poll verdict.

“People voted for Zanu PF,” Mafume told reporters.

“Many, including civil servants, were gullible to Zanu PF election promises. They were promised above poverty datum line salaries and teachers’ leaders were heard celebrating the news prematurely, as they dined with Zanu PF ministers only to be disappointed after the elections.

“There are many people who I met in queues openly telling me that they intended to vote for Zanu PF. They went on to vote for Zanu PF and told us that we were getting carried away with power in the inclusive government.”

Mafume’s message resonates with recent assertions by Biti that Zanu PF had a sexy electoral message that helped it win the general elections last year.

Biti in March told a policy dialogue held at the Sapes Trust in Harare that Zanu PF’s “bhora mugedhi” message resonated with the electorate. He came under fire for conceding defeat to Zanu PF.

Tsvangirai told a news conference yesterday at Harvest House, the MDC headquarters in central Harare, that “we all remember the grand theft of July 31 at which the people’s mandate was stolen”.

“But one-year on, without a hint of irony, we had a handful of people holding a purported national celebration at State House,” Tsvangirai said.

“Closeted away from the painful daily experiences of a people mired in a serious national crisis, our colleagues had the reckless and provocative courage to throw a party, even at a time when they are struggling to pay salaries of government workers.”

Biti, on the other hand, was one of the most vocal proponents of a poll-rerun and alleged in an August 3, 2013 opinion piece that Zanu PF had “stolen this election to the extent that they themselves are so embarrassed”.

Biti spent months championing the cause.

But at the policy dialogue held in Harare as Zanu PF spurned MDC calls for another coalition and amid intensifying intra-party clashes over leadership renewal, the lawyer claimed “we didn’t do well in 2013”.

“Zanu in the last election had a very simple message, bhora mugedhi,” Biti said. “Even a little woman in Chendambuya or Dotito knew one thing, bhora mugedhi. Perhaps we were too sophisticated, but what was our message because the message of change of 2000 is not the message for now.

“We were selling hopes and dreams when Zanu PF was selling practical realities. We (Zanu PF) are going to give you a farm, it’s there. We are going to give you $5 000 through (Saviour) Kasukuwere’s ministry.”

Zimbabwe’s longtime president Mugabe won 61 percent of the presidential vote on July 31, followed by Tsvangirai at 33 percent, securing the 90-year-old in power for 34 years and another five-year term in office.

Mafume on Thursday said now that the economy is not functioning and pre-election promises are yet to be met, “some people now claim the elections were rigged”.

“We know people voted for Zanu PF,” Mafume said.

“We should not make excuses for the electorate.”

He scoffed at demands by Tsvangirai, 62, for fresh elections, ostensibly because last year’s polls were rigged by Mugabe.

In a damning letter to the Troika Organ on Politics, Defence and Security of the 15-member Sadc, Tsvangirai said a compromise to produce a government that might save Zimbabwe from further financial calamity was proving elusive.

The MDC leader’s emissaries handed the letter to the regional leaders at the two-day summit in Victoria Falls last weekend, as hundreds of anti-government MDC protesters began a job march in the capital, raising fears of political instability.

“We should focus on the economy and play our role as the opposition by keeping the ruling Zanu PF on its toes,” Mafume said.

“We are the opposition and we will tell them where they go wrong. There is an overdose of elections in the country and this tends to affect efforts to revive the economy. The focus should now be on fixing the economy. People need to breathe.

“Zanu PF did whatever they did but the fact remains they won the elections. Let them govern for the benefit of everyone and work towards reviving the economy. Even if we hold elections, Zanu PF will win again.

“This is evident in the by-elections that have been held in the country so far. In any case, who will fund the elections? Certainly not the overburdened taxpayer.”

Comments (26)

Ever since this rag tag outfit came together, the only focus they have is to large extent denegrating Tsvangirai and Mugage to a lesser extent. They have not told the nation what their alternative programme would be. They seem to replicate Zanu in the blame game, it everyone else fault except them.

chamboko - 24 August 2014

But Biti reportedly wrote to SADC saying the elections were rigged. Toziva zvipi manje?

Kennedy Kaitano - 24 August 2014

The loud falsewood is that ZANU(PF) won the 2013 general elections but the silent truth is a small number voted for them.

mambo - 24 August 2014

Is this the Jacob Mafume who was once at Crisis Coalition and then later joined USAID? If so, what can he tell us about democracy and respecting women. He stole funds at Crisis Coalition and at the Prime Minister's office. He's known for carpet interviews at Crisis. All the girls working at Coalition including an MSU student intern Tatenda Mazarura was raped a lot of times by Mafume. So what does this rapist know about respect for women.Nxaaa

Siyanai naTsvangirai - 24 August 2014

Vana Mafume were in the opposition and yet they voted for ZANU PF.....that is how they know that Zanu PF won resoundingly!

Lok - 25 August 2014

This Mafume thing is just fumes and nothing more.He seems to think that attacking Tsvangirai will bring votes to their stillborn Renewal Nonsense.Instead of telling the electorate what you have to offer - if you have any - you waste our time attacking somebody you have repeatedly told us is no longer relevant.Bush lawyer, give us a rest.

Dzinonzwa Hadzirimi - 25 August 2014

Yah ka project aka kakapenga hako. God makes them mad that he wants to destory, this is sheer madness. Where did he vote?

Maita Manyuka - 25 August 2014

This Mafume,like his boss Biti&co, is a confused idot.In fact,the whole so called RENEWAL TEAM is full of confused fools.MT should be very careful who to re admit into MDC T.

MAHUMBWE - 25 August 2014

now that there are people who are saying mugabe did not rig, he is going to make sure that his rigging machinery will be well oiled for next election. you biti and the rest you real dont know how mugabe rigged when you even saw some funny young people dropped by buses from other places. you real mean you did not see that. crazy people. through mudede mugabe rigs and is already doing that now fro the next election. mudede's job in that office is to rig. biti are sure you dont know that or just your fight with tsvangirai has got into your head and you are getting confused of who your real enemy is.

see - 25 August 2014

"...igniting fresh tensions.." ...what tension? In what can only be described as agenda-setting, the tension exists only in the reporter's head!! A DOG MAY BARK AT A PASSING TRAIN...

ZVOKWADI - 25 August 2014

Hapana angapewo this Mafume guy award yaNOISE MAKER OF THE YEAR here. He sure deserves the accolade

Tatenda - 25 August 2014

Mafume is making a blind mistake here by setting the very wrong precedence. He knows the elections were rigged but just because they want to oppose Tsvangirai he chooses to sell out,well he has already sold out . In future he is not going to challenge the credibility of any election given a good record on the part of ZPF of rigging. They should not cry foul when the same same happens to them that is if they are a serious political party as events unfolding currently suggest otherwise.

makata - 25 August 2014

Mafume is a confussed cocroach he don't know what he is talking about.The should find another spokesperson if they continue like this they are chidren at creche

Bvumawo - 25 August 2014

Why are you saying that when ZANU PF is already ruling the country, whom do want to know that ZANU PF was voted. You seem to think that another party is ruling not ZANU PF. Its better to be quiet than to insult the people you purport to represent and lead.

pagomo - 25 August 2014

He is now certified idiot

Mfundisi - 25 August 2014

Jacob Mafume please watch this video again with Biti catching ZANU PF red handed rigging the elections

Mfundisi - 25 August 2014

Jacob Mafume please watch this video again with Biti catching ZANU PF red handed rigging the elections ? 4:02? 4:02 Aug 1, 2013 - Uploaded by vladnovsky Election rigging in the 2013 'Special Vote' exposed as bus loads of people from rural ...

Mfundisi - 25 August 2014

Uyu muchinda unonzi Mafume iduzvi chairo. Ngaasati iye kana akavhotera ZANU PF oti ndozvakaitwa nemunhu wese. These are the kind of people who make the general public look at the so educated people with scorn and yet its their own stupidity.

Chomuruvati - 26 August 2014

Its really expected to hear such kind of statements from bitis mdc project. People should remember that it is the same biti were zanu wanted not to win the harare east constituency when they bussed people to vote there. Infact it was said biti lost in that constituency at first but later we had that Biti had won in that constituency and this is something that shows that biti was part and parcel of the rigging machinery after he agreed to have results tilt into his favour

truth - 26 August 2014

The truth hurts sure . Everyone is fuming . Why ? because they don't want to hear the truth . I wonder if this is going to change that truth or if its going to put them into power

Mose Ruddolf ( Hitler) - 26 August 2014

Zvakaoma. Zuro chaiwo painzi mainterpart election emayouth eZANU abirwa, Mafume akatsinhira achiti ndiwo maitiro avo ekurigger but today is singing a different song. Always shift goal so often. Ndiri kutoshaya kuti ari kuzvifambisa sei? Anenge ava kuda chiremba wepfungwa since something is wrong in his head. He is making more enemies than frieds kunyangwe neavo vaaitaurira izvozvo vakatonyanya kumuvenga kupfuura reception yaakawana paakasvika. Let him be used but note you will end up in a bin sooner than later. Ask fellow brother Mutambara and sister Makuvarara they will tell you more about dining with devil. Don't forget the recent news of the Sunday Mail Editor. Mafume repent before it is too late. akuyambira ndewako.

zvirikumbofamba sei? - 26 August 2014

All the events that we have witnessed happening in the recent ZANU Youth and women's league elections bear testimony to what exactly happened in the 31 July 2013 elections. There was rampant vote buying, people were intimidated, ballot boxes were stuffed up, threats were made at anyone in opposition and the result was not a true reflection of what the electorate had. Now must we be reminded about that by an opportunist from a no name political party full of equally directionless comrades, I say to hell with them all. We don't need to hear your opinions for we know what you stand for Mafume, Biti, Ncube, Mangoma ,Madhuku and all the other like -minded persons.

Dr Know - 26 August 2014

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