MDC seeks AU, Sadc intervention on 2018 polls

HARARE - The MDC has said it is engaging the African Union (AU) and Sadc to ensure that next year’s elections are free and fair.

This comes as several concerns have been raised over the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec)’s capacity to conduct a free and fair poll, outside the influence of President Robert Mugabe’s ruling party — Zanu PF.

“The MDC is always engaging all stakeholders, including regional…bodies such as Sadc and the AU.

“We can assure Zimbabweans that we have got our eyes firmly on the ball and we are monitoring each and every move that is being made by Zec,” MDC spokesperson Obert Gutu told the Daily News this week.

“The people of Zimbabwe are demanding and in fact, they do deserve a free and fair election to be held next year.

“There is broad national consensus around the need to ensure that the 2018 elections are credible and free from contestation,” he added, without giving further details on the engagements.

Several opposition parties have raised the red flag, claiming Zec is compromised and cannot conduct a proper election process that is free and fair.

The major concern has been the presence of military personnel in the electoral body’s secretariat.

The Morgan Tsvangirai-led MDC — the biggest opposition political party in Zimbabwe — has accused Zanu PF of influencing Zec ahead of the 2018 polls.

“We are acutely aware of the fact that the Zanu PF regime is already sensing a crushing and humiliating defeat in next year’s elections and as such, they are trying to influence Zec to make it extremely difficult for most people to register to vote.

“It is trite that dictatorships thrive on voter apathy as well as on voter demotivation and intimidation.

“The MDC will not allow Zec to unconstitutionally usurp the right of all eligible Zimbabweans to register as voters,” it said recently.

Gutu, however, without disclosing the strategies that they are using to ensure that there will be a free and fair election, said the move to achieve the goal is work in progress.

“Some of the things that we are doing are of a very strategic nature and as such, we can’t disclose everything… in the public domain. Sometimes, quiet diplomacy is more effective than megaphone diplomacy,” he said.

MDC’s concerns come on the back of legal experts saying the mooted electronic voter register under the biometric voter registration (BVR) system is illegal.

Comments (1)

Those who are saying BVR is illegal must be ZANU supporters who know clearly that if the program is implemented professionally zanu will loss full time . Many ZANU supporters have been bragging openly that in every election they voted more than ten times .With BVR such things will never take place meaning zanu will score very little votes including soldiers who always vote many times being forced by their bosses will never .vote repeatedly bcoz the computer will tell they voted already

Diibulaanyika - 1 July 2017

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