Zanu PF in poll scandal

HARARE - It appears as if it never rains but pours for President Robert Mugabe’s warring Zanu PF, after it emerged yesterday that the party’s winning candidate in the recent Hurungwe West by-election, Keith Guzah — who has already been sworn in as a Member of Parliament — may have dribbled his way to the seat fraudulently.

If this is established to be true, not only will Guzah lose his seat, it will pile further pressure on the country’s beleaguered electoral body, the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec), as well as on Mugabe and Zanu PF who for long have had to deal with damaging allegations from the country’s opposition and civil society organisations that they always cheat their way to power.

The allegations will also do little to dampen the ruling party’s deadly and seemingly unstoppable factional and succession wars that have seen the brutal purging of many of its senior officials, including former Vice President Joice Mujuru — amid untested claims that they plotted to oust and kill Mugabe.

Investigations by the Daily News over the past week suggest that Guzah may not have been a registered voter in Hurungwe West, a development that would automatically disqualify him from Parliament if proven to be true.

Even more damaging for Guzah and Zanu PF, there are increasing doubts about whether he voted in last week’s by-elections, which would also make him not legally qualified to represent the constituency — a development that in turn would mean that his political nemesis and the losing independent candidate for the seat, Temba Mliswa, would be declared the new MP for Hurungwe West under the country’s electoral laws.

Despite all the information to the contrary that is in possession of the Daily News, Guzah himself was adamant yesterday that he had voted — saying he had used a voter registration slip.

However, and surprisingly, he would not name the polling station where he cast his vote when pressed to do so by the newspaper.

“Temba anotaurisa zvakawanda (Temba Mliswa talks too much). If I did not vote, how then did I qualify at the nomination court? I am not going to respond to cheap politics coming from a losing MP. I am not going to make comments on that,” Guzah said.

Pressed further whether his name was on the voters’ roll, he said he had used his registration slip to vote, something that the Zec chairperson Rita Makarau emphatically said was not possible.

“Nobody was allowed to vote using registration slips during the by-elections,” Makarau said firmly.

Constitutional law expert and professor of law at the University of Zimbabwe, Lovemore Madhuku, chipped in and said the Electoral Law was very clear when it came to the qualification of a person to be a parliamentary candidate.

“If you are not on the voters’ roll, and if it is true that he is not on the roll then it means the election is null and void. He cannot be the MP for the area.

“The Constitution in section 125 makes it clear that for one to be MP he or she must be 21 and above and must be a registered voter. The Electoral Act says clearly that for one to be a candidate one must be a registered voter in that particular area,” Madhuku said.

He added that if it turned out that Guzah was not on the voters’ roll, “his election is not only null but he could face arrest because he misled the nomination court”.

“There is a nomination form that prospective candidates must fill in and if you declare that you are registered when you are not this could have serious legal implications,” the respected academic-cum-politician said.

The Daily News was also told by Zanu PF sources as it investigated the matter that senior party officials that include secretary for the commissariat Saviour Kasukuwere and secretary for administration Ignatius Chombo had allegedly been aware that Guzah was not a registered voter a long time ago, but had chosen to ignore — allegedly arguing that “they could circumvent the legal issue as has become the norm in the party”.

Efforts to talk to Kasukuwere and Chombo last night were unsuccessful.

When the Daily News further put it to Guzah that he had in fact been turned away at Rengwe Polling Station as had been the case with other prospective voters who had intended to use registration slips to vote, Guzah said he would rather focus on the future than the past.

“I am not going to listen to whatever will come from Mliswa. I need to serve people first. What is important is I focus on developmental issues affecting the people of

Hurungwe, things like hospitals and infrastructure. I voted, I had a slip,” Guzah said.

A senior party provincial official told the newspaper yesterday that the “revelation was public knowledge and a serious boob on the part of senior party officials” which would see the Hurungwe West seat going to Mliswa.

“It does not even need a by-election to fill the seat,” Madhuku added. “The person who was validly nominated at the nomination court and was a registered voter becomes the candidate for the area because he was the only eligible candidate”.

Another miffed Zanu PF official told the Daily News that the Guzah debacle had

exposed how the party “imposes candidates, even those who are not registered voters” in certain constituencies.

“He claims to have a home in Rengwe which borders Magunje constituency and he went to the nomination court with a slip hoping to register around that time. He must have forgotten to register.

“At a workshop held on June 7 just before the elections, Zec made it clear that they will not accept people with voting slips and his polling agents were all there. He then tried to use a slip in ward 15 at Rengwe,” said the disaffected post-congress Zanu PF official.

Special Muchareva, a polling agent for Mliswa, also recounted to the Daily News yesterday how a supposedly flustered Guzah had almost exploded when he was also allegedly turned away from voting at Feluchi ward 24.

“He had a slip and when he went through the formalities he was frustrated that his name was not on the voters’ roll and he stormed out of the polling station,” Muchareva claimed.

A casual perusal of the electronic voters’ roll that Zec supplied to Mliswa as prescribed by the law did not have Guzah’s name.

Mliswa said yesterday that he had also been informed that his rival did not vote.

“Reports that I received say Guzah did not vote and I am weighing my options,” he said.

Comments (21)

Zvamutsana-mutsana Temba naGuza. Temba ane nharo, temba na guza. Sulu adapted.

SaManyika Chaiye - 19 June 2015

I fail to understand why Zanu pf keeps on embarrassing itself like this all the time. It does not need a rocket scientist to see that this party has gone to the dogs. Young thugs are joining Zanu pf either for protection against the law for their criminal acts e.g Energy Mutodi or for personal enrichment like Guzah, Chiyangwa, Mayor Wadyajena etc....... The party has egg on its face now because of these young criminals...... Please Mr. President act now against these guys......

thete - 19 June 2015

this is Juicy news now. Loving the circus in zanu pf. But knowing zanu pf, they will manipulate the voters roll to include Guzah name

mafikizolo - 19 June 2015

Ko ivo vanhu vekuhurungwe vacho vanodii kuvhotera vanhu vekumusha, kwete tukomana twekuHarare utwu.Honai manje zvamakuitwa.

Pilsener - 19 June 2015

Zimbabwe is run and governed by a bunch of thieves and crooks. Even previously respected people like Rita Makarau have stooped low and descended into the slimy and disgusting gutter where ZANU-PF trolls. This is not only embarrassing but a clear and premeditated cheating, orchestrated by Kasukuwere and company, knowing they can and will flout laws without any repercussions. How can a country progress with such idiots. Yesterday it was Moyo, saying the most childish things on a twitter war with Mboweni, and Tomana saying and suggesting the most stupid things ever to be uttered by a professional of his capacity and office, and now this. Zimbabwe is in perpetual bondage, one of the few classic countries to actually achieve the regression in aspects of the word.

tino16 - 19 June 2015

Ya ndozvazvinoita kana chikepe chaakunyn'ura, i'm sure zanu inogaroshandisa such tactics all the time but unoziva kana nguva yangokwanaka zvinongoita zvega. I can bet with my last dollar that it's someone ari mu zanu akabvondora....zvaakubayana zvega!!

gift - 19 June 2015

All this whilst my beloved country cries.....

Den - 19 June 2015

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vincent - 19 June 2015

Its common sense the Zanupf in power now has no sensible people all good and rational men and women do not want to be identified witha sinking ship.its obvious that they now rely on worthless people like Guzah but there is one and only truth the people of Hurungwe dont want him and do not recognize him at all

carson macate - 19 June 2015

Temba angava mpengo hako chokwadi ndechekuti vanhu veHureungwe vanomuda nebasa raakavaitira zvokwadi ukavona uchiita zvuru zvina zvemavote akagwa semvumba

MukarangawekuMberengwa - 19 June 2015

Temba Mliswa illegally seized a company in Msasa, Noshio Motors and Benbar, that's ok? He threatened to KILL the owner and rapre his wife, that's ok? He harrassed, intimidated, looted, illegally opened a bank account, maliciously damaged property, never paid, NASSA, NEC, P.A.Y.E. or Zimra, that's ok? He was born in Zambia, that's ok? He was deported from UK for credit card fraud, that's ok? His BRITISH Parents illegally recieve money from him, that's ok? He beats his farm workers with barbed wire, found guilty of this heinous crim but only paid a $50 fine, that's ok? Mliswa used corruption and bribery to get "acquitted" for illegally seizing the company in Msasa Noshio and Benbar, that's ok? Why Temba Mliswa must have everything his own way ALL the time?? He must be held accountable for his corrupt llegal activities as the President condemns this as well as Mliswa using the President and First Lady's name in vain for personal gain ang greed. Can't wait to see the outcome of this. Justice through compensation from Mliswa to prevail

MA -THIEFWA - 19 June 2015

At Makarau is a disgrace. When she accepted this moron as a candidate for Hurungwe why didn't she check if Guzah was a regiistered voter of the constituency. I know there is an electronic voters roll. It can be checked by a simple and few key strokes.

Nhataps - 20 June 2015

Makarau must do the most respected thing resign .What ever explanation she mighty have about this rubbish in Hurungwe Zimbabweans are not interested and would not even want to hear it . Her credibility as a lawyer is totally dented . She is not professional she only waits to be dictated at by zanu hence she allowed a vagrant who does not reside in Hurungwe to contest as a an MP without doing the basics check if all contesingt people have the right requirements . The woman is totally incompetent and can no longer be trusted to lead such a sensetive organ of govt .If she wants to cleanse herself she must except responsibility and resign and she will loss nothing by doing so . But bcoz she has eaten from the same plate with Mugabe it remains to be seen if she can resign.

Diibulaanyika - 20 June 2015

@Ma-Thiefwa.Sorry Cde the Law looks at the current case,the present!The judge does not look at the future or the past cases unless they are part of the offence.

Guranyanga - 21 June 2015

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