Back to Index, Back to Special Index
This article participates on the following special index pages:
Zimbabwe's Elections 2013 - Index of Articles
takes over polls: MDC-T
July 17, 2013
The MDC-T yesterday
claimed the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) had lost control
of the elections
to State security agents as it emerged uniformed forces were, at
some centres, still casting their ballots as special voters by early
yesterday, several hours after the cut-off time, in violation of
press conference in Harare, MDC-T secretary-general Tendai
Biti said his party would make a High Court application to contest
the outcome and approach Sadc citing a litany of electoral violations.
Zec chairperson Justice Rita Makarau and some of the commissioners
of wrongdoing, but castigated some members of the secretariat whom
he said were disregarding directives handed down to them.
is a total disconnect between Zec and their officers on the ground.
Unknown elements have literally taken over the show. They (Zec officials)
are now taking instructions direct from the junta,” he said.
did not produce evidence of how the alleged junta had taken over.
comments were echoed by MDC-T leader Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai,
who told party supporters at a campaign rally at Mutora business
centre in Gokwe that Zec had deliberately bungled the special voting
to rig the polls.
failed to handle 80 000 voters in two days how can they be expected
to handle six million voters in one day, on July 31?” Tsvangirai
He said failure
by Zec was not by coincidence, but was planned.
He said artificial
shortages of special voting ballots had been created after Zanu-PF
had realised that the police whom they had thought would vote for
them were actually going to vote for the MDC-T.
want to steal the elections through the special ballot vote. They
had all the 80 000 ballots, but what their intelligence told them
was that the police also wanted change. They then created an artificial
shortage and only released 5 000 special envelopes,” he said.
accused Zanu-PF of bussing its youths to vote as police officers
at the Mount Pleasant Hall polling station.
In Harare, Biti
challenged Zec to explain what legal instruments they had used to
extend the special voting period beyond its scheduled cut-off time.
of special voting is a clear breach of the law, which we are going
to challenge in court. According to Section 81 part 14 of the Electoral
Law, the process should have ended by 7pm on Monday, but uniformed
forces are still voting as we speak,” he said, adding that
they would file their application before the end of the day yesterday.
At Town House
in Harare, members of the uniformed forces were still milling around
at around mid-morning yesterday and only dispersed at 12:20pm after
they were told to go back to their stations. One police officer
told NewsDay: “Yes, we were still voting by 5am (yesterday).
We are under clear instructions that we have to vote before returning
to work,” she said.
Biti cited cases
in which Zec officials were allegedly reduced to bystanders.
an officer-in-charge of one police station ended up as the presiding
officer . . . In Mabvuku, the voters’ roll was completely
disregarded as uniformed forces were only asked to produce their
force numbers . . . In Manicaland, MDC-T polling agents were chased
away,” he said, adding that Zanu-PF was now panicking after
realising that their ploy to intimidate uniformed forces members
by forcing them to vote in their bosses’ presence had hit
a brick wall.
yesterday admitted the process had turned chaotic, adding the commission
had decided to get those that had failed to cast their ballots to
vote together with the rest of the electorate on July 31.
“. . .
a substantial number of members of the disciplined forces and electoral
officers of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission were unable to cast
votes because their ballot papers did not reach their special voting
centres before the close of special polling or at all,” the
Election Commission will, therefore, ensure that all persons who
were deprived of the opportunity to vote between 14 and 15 July
2013 will be able to vote on 31 July 2013 when the rest of the electorate
end, only the names of those who actually cast ballots during the
special vote will be deleted from the ward voters’ rolls that
will be used for polling on 31 July 2013.
of those officers who voted on 14 and 15 July 2013 and those who
failed to cast their ballots will lie open for public inspection
at the offices of the Chief Elections Officer.
Electoral Commission sincerely regrets the inconvenience caused
to members of the disciplined forces and of the Commission itself,
to political parties and to the nation at large.”
spokesperson Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba said
the police were yet to establish how many of their members had voted.
issue a statement soon as we are still consolidating information
from throughout the country,” she said.
On Monday, police
sought to blame the MDC-T for the chaos that characterised the special
Please credit www.kubatana.net if you make use of material from this website.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License unless stated otherwise.