Voters torn between difficult choices

HARARE - Today, the electorate in 14 vacant constituencies nationwide goes to the poll confronted with maverick choices between the devil they know and an opportunity to express their dismay over unfulfilled promises.

Eligible voters can choose between more of the same or opt to register the pain they have endured while wishing for elusive change of fortune by sending unequivocal signals that the current crop of leaders has let them down.

The by-elections somewhat provide a mid-term audit of how government has missed intended outcomes owing to concentration on power struggles at the expense of issues that deal with ameliorating commonplace suffering.

Voters have a slight edge to tell whoever chooses to represent them that they expect improved performance to deserve their vote. In today’s by-election, the electorate hold the aces and must remind themselves that casting ballots is not just a ritual but an opportunity to raise the red flag and alert politicians of egregious policy failures that have landed the majority in a cesspool of poverty, deprivation and unmet aspirations.

The by-elections are a litmus test to judge whether the electorate still hopes that by some strange miracle, dimmed prospects of a better future loom on the horizon.

Throughout the election campaign, the ruling Zanu PF party has been offering spanking fresh promises while conveniently skirting round important issues of major concern to the electorate such as rampant unemployment and rising poverty which it pledged to tackle.

More importantly, Zanu PF’s campaign has exposed its weakness to project an all-encompassing vision for equitable national development by covertly threatening to marginalise those who do not vote for it.

This mean-mouthed commitment to deny those who do not vote for it puts the ruling party in a position that contradicts its claim of a pro-poor and people-oriented administration. Its narrative has revolved around what an invincible behemoth the party is, mixed with staccato repetition of delusionary promises while canvassing support for its candidates without offering alternatives to put back on the rails the economy which has reached tipping point.

Voters ought not cast this pearl of a chance to the proverbial swine by grasping the opportunity to register protest against an administration that believes the electorate should pander its condescending whims regardless of how badly it is performing.

The clear choice that stands out for the voter is whether to give a lifeline to a government failing its electorate because of a serious deficit in visionary leadership; clarity of vision; serious failure to stop insatiable greed among the leadership and inertia to stamp out a burgeoning culture of corruption which favours a few.

The key point of these by-elections would be a reflection of whether the electorate has given up trying to put leaders to the sword in order for them to appreciate that they have a contract with the people to make their lives amenable.

Comments (2)

IN AS MUCH AS THIS ARTICLE IS VERY CANDID AND TRUTHFUL, DONT YOU THINK THAT PUBLISHING IT ON THE DAY OF THE BYE ELECTIONS IS A BIT SHORTSIGHTED??? THIS MESSAGE SHOULD HAVE BEEN SPREAD TO THE ELECTORATE WELL BEFORE THIS DAY FOR THEM TO REGISTER IT. ITS ACTUALLY VERY GOOD AND HONEST, BUT ILL TIMED.

SHIBOBO - 10 June 2015

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