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This article participates on the following special index pages:
Zimbabwe's Elections 2013 - Index of Articles
CSOs statement on Zimbabwe’s July 31st, 2013 harmonised elections
Zimbabwean Civil Society Organisations
August 02, 2013
We, the Heads
of CSO Coalitions and Networks would like to categorically state
that the elections
held in Zimbabwe on July 31st, 2013 and the processes leading
up to them do not by any stretch of the imagination qualify this
election as being free, fair or credible.
We take the
above position fully subscribing to the reasons and substantiations
given by ZESN
and SADC-CNGO at their Press Conferences held on 1st and 2nd, of
August 2013, respectively on the following issues:
1. Lack of integrity
of the voters’ roll
2. Lack of timely availability of the voters’ roll
3. Suspiciously high number of voters turned away
4. Suspiciously high number of assisted voters
5. Bussing of people from outside constituencies
6. Contested election timing and rules
7. Failure to implement agreed reforms
8. Systematic and intentional disenfranchisement of potential and
ZEC failed to
provide explanations and corrective action that would have had assuaged
the above concerns, thus facilitating and allowing for possible
manipulation of the process.
It is curious
that when ZEC was unable to meet the constitutional requirement
that all those eligible to register be afforded an opportunity to
do so, it categorically stated that it would apply the provisions
of the Electoral
Act in relation to the cut off date, leaving many disenfranchised.
However, it brought an application to the Constitutional Court asking
that provisions of the Electoral Act be suspended to accommodate
special voters who had failed to vote on the appointed dates.
We note the
encouragement by different stakeholders and Observer Missions for
aggrieved parties to approach the courts for redress. We however,
respectfully disagree with that approach because we believe it is
the courts that got us into this contested position. We have no
reason to believe that the same courts can get us out of the mess.
We regard this
election as illegitimate and not reflective of the will of the people.
People should be allowed to peacefully exercise their constitutional
rights which Zanu-PF has already, through Patrick Chinamasa, threatened
We implore ZEC
to urgently release statistics of assisted voters per polling station,
statistics of people turned away per polling station nationwide
and the reasons thereof and the total number of people who voted
using voter registration slips per polling station nationwide. ZEC
already has this critical information and it will cost it nothing
but the will to release this information. We call upon the Registrar
General of Voters to immediately release the electronic copy of
the Voters’ Roll to all interested parties. Claims of its
unavailability are illogical as the hard copy is generated from
the electronic version.
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