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  • Zimbabwe's Elections 2013 - Index of Articles

  • Lupane Multi-Stakeholders peace meeting
    Bulawayo Agenda

    June 25, 2013

    More than 200 Lupane residents, villagers, traditional leaders, civil society leaders, councilors, JOMIC representatives, and political parties’ representatives from MDC, Zanu-PF, ZAPU and MDC-T participated in a Multi-stakeholder peace meeting organised by Lupane Agenda at Kusile Rural District Council (RDC) Hall last Friday (21 June). The main objective of the meeting was to promote peace and tolerance within communities.

    Below are the major highlights of the meeting;

    • Election date: NANGO Chairperson Effie Ncube, who had been invited to give update on preparations for elections and civil society position, urged citizens to be ready for elections as, despite large cries on the need to extend the election date so as to allow implementation of the key reforms that may lead to the creation of a conducive environment for free and fair elections, it is still up to an already compromised Constitutional Court to extend the election date.
    • Electoral violence: Participants challenged political parties to put in place disciplinary measures to deal with their party supporters who would have perpetrated violence during elections. The parties, albeit unconvincing, then pledged to ensure that their members do not engage in violence and would be punished if they did.
    • Stakeholders pointed out that elections come and go and therefore communities should not be divided by election but rather be cohesive and work together despite political differences for the development of their communities.
    • They also urged citizens to respect each other’s right and freedom of association and choice especially during elections as this is the beginning of promotion of local democracy.
    • Traditional leaders’ partisan conduct was condemned and they were urged to be exemplary by carrying out their mandate in a non-partisan manner and promote peace and tolerance in their communities.
    • Access to information on socio-political developments: Participants called for media reforms so as to promote diversity and coverage of all social groups, increased information access especially on the promotion of peace towards elections. They complained about the continued abuse of public media, especially ZBC that has been used as a propaganda tool for Zanu-PF.

    The meeting progressed well until the Lupane Police and Office of the President members disrupted it 30 minutes before its end in response to the arrival of around 100 MDC-T activists who were expecting to be addressed by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai at the same venue. BA’s understanding had been that the PM’s meeting was scheduled to start at around 2pm, after the BA meeting had ended.

    A Public Meeting that was scheduled for Saturday was cancelled after it emerged that the PM had postponed his Lupane meeting from Friday (21/06/13) to Saturday 10 am at the same venue. To avoid confusion in terms of ownership and participation of the two meetings, BA decided to call off the meeting to allow the Prime Minister to round-up his tour.

    Visit the Bulawayo Agenda fact sheet

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