Ruth Weiss: Zimbabwe before the elections (32)


Election campaign

The pace of the election campaign has increased, as has the number of complaints regarding the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission and the voters' roll.

The involvement of the security forces, in particular the army which has been deployed country-wide to get President Robert Mugabe re-elected, is causing concern among Zanu-PF leadership at the army's pro-active role in the party.(1) The President is said to have set up a parallel election campaign to Zanu-PF, as he distrusts some of the party leaders.(2) The President appointed six new judges without consulting Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai.(3) Vice President Joice Mujuru has promised church leaders farms and houses if they ensure a Zanu PF win.(4)

Huge crowds attended the rallies of Mugabe as well as the Morgan Tsvangirai and Welshman Ncube, with one person killed, several injured at a Mugabe gathering due to overcrowding.(5) Mugabe, who despite showing his age, still addresses crowds in lengthy speeches, interrupted campaigning by visiting Lesotho for the King's 50th birthday.(6)

Voters Roll

Shortage of funds have left the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) in a precarious position and unprepared for the election.(7)

Furthermore, Registrar General Tobaiwa Mudede blocked Research and Advocacy Unit (Rau), from launching a detailed analysis of the 2013 voters' roll. Rau had discovered an extra one million names on the voters roll. Human Rights lawyers urged the Registrar General from withdrawing his action.(8) Zimbabwe Election Support Network (Zesn), has found under-registration of voters in mostly urban areas. Some 750 000 urban voters are said to be missing from the voters' roll, with thousands of ghost voters.(9) The Election Resource Centre monitoring the campaign said that unless the elections are postponed, thousands will be unable to cast their vote, as 2m could not register.(10)

Zec was also at the centre of a controversy concerning the Special vote. Anomalies regarding voters' registration using this facility were reported, enforcing the fear of vote rigging.(11) The Court directed Attorney General Johannes Tomana to investigate the number of police officers in the country after MDC claimed lack of transparency and credibility. It challenged the number of 69 000 police officer applying for the Special vote, with fewer officers actually employed.(12). Two police officers have been charged with providing MDC with a list of police officers.(13) The police explained the high number of police votes by explaining the appointment of special officers for the election period.(14) Chaotic conditions during the 2 days set aside for the special vote meant thousands of potential voters could not cast their vote.(15) Zec tried to extend time and eventually said those who had missed out, could vote with the general public on July 31. Tendai Biti accused the security forces for running a parallel structure within Zec.(16) The first of the two voting days was marked by chaos and confusion, for which Zec apologized.(17)

There has been a resurgence of politically motivated violence by Zanu-PF in various parts of the country directed at MDC supporters, particularly in Masvingo and Mashonaland.(18)

The MDCs and SADC expressed surprise at Mugabe's statement that the African Union (AU) had called a Zim- summit on July 19th , as they had not been advised.(19) A SADC summit may be held on July 20th.(20) Some observers fear chaotic conditions on polling day. The EU may withdraw its technical support for Zec, if a two-man technical mission is barred from entering the country.(21) The anonymous Facebook blogger and Zanu-PF mole Baba Jukwa said Zanu-PF was now plotting to change the polling date via the AU, as the special vote did not deliver the required result.(22) A new TV channel has opened up ahead of elections.(23)

Members of the Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) have been excluded from the role of polling officers.(24) Socalled `aliens', i e persons born in Zimbabwe of parents from neighbouring countries, have demanded that Zec allows them to register as voters, in terms of the constitution.(25) Zec has promised to announce election results within five days.(26)

To MDC-T's concern, Zanu-PF has pulled out of the watchdog Joint Monitoring and Implementation Committee (JOMIC), set up under the 2008 agreement.(27)

Amnesty International's new report indicates that during the past eight months the campaign of intimidation and arrests of human rights defenders and civil society leaders intensified, giving rise to doubts concerning the credibility of the election.(28). Tanzanian Foreign Minister Bernard Membe, head of SADC observer mission, has warned that the world was watching Zimbabwe.(29)

A human rights activist Elliot Dhliwayo of Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR), was killed in an accident alleged to have been an assassination, with his car rammed by two vehicles.(30).

Despite protests to the contrary, police are showing bias during the election campaign. They barred MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai from a planned walk-about in Zvimba, Mugabe's home district and Chinhoyi in Mashonaland West. The Zimbabwe Vigil reported police fired shots into the air to disperse Harare human activists hoping to deliver a petition demanding the right to free and fair elections.(31)

The election is predicted by some analysts to become a neck-to-neck race between Mugabe and Tsvangirai may see MDC's Welshman Ncube emerging as the kingmaker, according to some analysts.(32)

A curious "secret" document has emerged, which details an alleged Zanu-PF plot to assassinate South African President Jacob Zuma. The Mail and Guardian, which published the report, said the authenticity could not be established.(33)

Baba Jukwa, the mysterious Zanu-PF mole, has been at it again, naming names and warnings of the party's shenanigans. He spoke of inflated number of voter registration and claimed that the Special voting by police officers and others scheduled for the 14th July had actually happened the previous day and would be counted twice. His Facebook site also claimed that Tinashe Faku who was shot in Waterfalls the previous week, had been mistaken for his brother, a staunch MDC activist.. Mugabe has offered a US$300 000 reward for unmasking Baba Jukwa.

Some 2000 former refugees during the liberation war are demanding compensation as War Veterans for helping liberation movement.

A new study has shown the land reform worsened poverty.

  1. Herald 16.7
  2. Zim. Independent 12.7
  3. Election Alert 5 of 2013, http://www.voanews.com/17.7, Voice of America Zim.17.7, SW Radio Africa 17.7
  4. SW Radio Africa 12.7
  5. SAPA-AP 17.7, Zim.Independent 17.7, http://www.zimdiaspora.com/
  6. SW Radio Africa 13.7
  7. MDC statement 14.7, Standard 15.7, SW Radio Africa17.7, Voice of America 17.7
  8. Daily News 17.7
  9. Herald 14.7
  10. The Zimbabwean 14.7, SW Radio Africa 15.7, The Zimbabwean 15.7, http://www.kubatana.net/15.7
  11. http://www.foxnews.com/17.7, SW Radio Africa 16.7, Voice of America 16.7, Zim.Independent 16.7
  12. New Zimbabwe 17.7
  13. SW Radio Africa 16.7, 17.7
  14. Voice of America Zim. 16.7, SW Radio Africa 16.7, The Zimbabwean UK 17.7
  15. SW Radio Africa 18.7
  16. tp://www.timeslive.co.za/ [HYPERLINK: http://www.timeslive.co.za/] Daily News 18.7
  17. (http://www.zimeye.org/17.7
  18. BBC 17.7
  19. SW Radio Africa 12.7
  20. Voice of America Zim.12.7
  21. News24 13.7
  22. SW Radio Africa 17.7
  23. SW Radio Africa 12.7
  24. The Zimbabwean 15.7
  25. SW Radio Africa 15.7
  26. SW Radio Africa 12.7
  27. Mail and Guardian 12.7
  28. Mail and Guardian 12.7, Guardian UK 13.7
  29. Daily News 13.7
  30. http://www.zimeye.org/13.7 , 14.7
  31. Telegraph 14.7
  32. http://www.zimdiaspora.com/17.7
  33. The Zimbabwean UK 17.7

Letzte Änderung: Sunday, 21-Jul-2013 07:53:34 CEST [an error occurred while processing this directive]