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Zimbabwe's Elections 2013 - Index of Articles
2013 harmonized elections statement
Makoni, Mavambo Kusile Dawn (M.K.D)
31 2013, the people of Zimbabwe voted in a peaceful and orderly
manner, following a month of energetic election campaigning by leaders
and candidates of the various contesting political parties.
the peaceful and orderly conduct on polling day, we make the following
observations on both the electoral process and its outcomes.
registration and voters' roll
General of Voters, acting under the authority and supervision of
the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC), registered voters, first
between April and May 2013, and then between 10 June, and 9 July
2013; as mandated by the new Constitution
as has already been recorded by many others, there were fewer registration
centers in urban areas than in rural areas, and it was easier to
register in the rural areas than in urban areas. The Chairperson
of ZEC, Justice Rita Makarau, admitting that the registration of
voters was flawed, said at the time:
are long and people are not being served efficiently... The entire
system is not coping". Consequently, hundreds of thousands
of potential voters failed to register, and were, therefore, denied
their right to vote.
The final voters'
roll became available only two days before voting, in the printed
form. Even today, the electronic version of the voters' roll is
still not available. Yet Section 21, Sub-Section 6(a) of the Electoral
Act obliges that:
a reasonable period of time after nomination day, … the Commission
shall provide free of charge, to every nominated candidate, one
copy in electronic form, of the constituency voter's roll to be
used in the election for which the candidate has been nominated".
and postal votes
There has been
ample, if not exhaustive airing of the un-clarities and irregularities
associated with both the Special and Postal Votes, which un-clarities
and irregularities were acknowledged by ZEC. Here, we simply add
that the lack of convincing explanations from ZEC on the conduct
of the special and postal votes, re-enforces the absence of integrity
and credibility in the electoral process.
of ZEC confirmed that they had printed 35% more ballot papers than
the estimated number of registered voters. However, she was unable
to explain convincingly, the need for so many more ballot papers;
compared to the regional and global best practice of between 5%
Up to now, there
has been no reconciliation of the ballot papers used on polling
day, against those printed.
The list of
polling stations published on 10 July 2013 was similar in number
and location to those used in 2008. However, an additional list
of 65 polling stations was published on election day, both in contravention
of Section 51 of the Electoral Act, which stipulates that polling
stations should be publicised three weeks before polling, and well
after contesting candidates had deployed their trained polling agents.
In most cases, the only election agents deployed in these additional
polling stations, represented candidates from one political party.
can be no confidence that votes cast in these additional polling
stations were genuine and authentic.
Voting was not
free of intimidation. There are wide spread reports of high numbers
of voters seeking assistance, either on account of illiteracy or
poor sight. Interestingly, the high incidence of assisted voters
occurred in the rural areas.
Given the high
level of literacy in Zimbabwe, and the low level of assisted voters
in 2008, it is disingenuous to suggest that Zimbabweans are less
literate in 2013, than in 2008.
registration slips and voter migration
There is strong
suspicion that, in the absence of a final voters' roll, the use
of voter registration slips as proof of registration, could have
been abused to enable multiple voting.
There are also
reports of the bussing of voters into various polling stations.
A dramatic video is doing the rounds, showing busses ferrying voters
into one polling station.
elections where indelible ink was used, Ultraviolet machines were
used to detect those who had already voted. This practice was abandoned
in this election, and it was left to the inspection of Elections
Officers to determine the 'pink' finger.
and consistent pattern in the results of the 2013 elections, compared
to 2008, is the implied growth in support for Zanu-PF. For example,
in Harare South, ZEC official results show that 29074 people voted
on 31 July 2013, compared to 23999, in 2008. Of the 29074, 20069
voted for Zanu-PF, up from 7111 in 2008; an increase of 12958. By
contrast, 7472 voted for MDC-T in 2013, up from 4489 in 2008; an
increase of 2983. These numbers indicate that 5075 new voters registered
in 2013, and they all voted for Zanu-PF.
There were 38
polling stations in the constituency, meaning that an average of
765 people voted at each polling station. This suggests that each
polling station served one voter every 56 seconds, from 7:00 am
to 7:00 pm.
The same picture
is painted in most constituencies country wide. It is also noteworthy
that votes for Zanu-PF increased in all 210 constituencies, and
those for MDC-T decreased or increased only slightly.
At some polling
stations, the results recorded that some candidates had zero votes,
suggesting that even they did not vote for themselves.
It will be recalled
that the Constitutional Court dismissed an application to nullify
the use of Presidential Powers, both to enact the new Electoral
Act, and to promulgate the election date. However, the Court did
not give reasons for its judgment at the time. Up till now those
reasons have not been given. Hence, besides the say so of the esteemed
court, the legal basis for holding this election has not been established
It bears remembering
that the same happened in the case of a challenge to the results
of the 2002 presidential election.
but not free, fair, credible or legitimate
On behalf of
Mavambo.Kusile.Dawn (M.K.D) party, I congratulate the people of
Zimbabwe for conducting themselves in a peaceful, orderly, disciplined
and dignified manner. I also commend the leaders of the other political
parties, especially Messrs Robert Mugabe and Morgan Tsvangirai,
for their consistent calls for violence-free elections.
light of all the shortcomings and irregularities enumerated above,
we reject the results announced by ZEC as not free, fair, credible
or legitimate. The results do not reflect the expression of the
free will of the people of Zimbabwe.
for ways out of the crisis that has been exacerbated by the illegitimate
elections of 31 July 2013, we are working together with leaders
of other national organisations to:
1) ensure that
all ballot boxes and polling station reports are secured intact
and not violated;
2) secure the final voters' roll, especially the electronic version;
3) facilitate the conduct of an independent forensic audit of the
electoral process and its outcomes, especially the voters' roll
and the elections materials generated on 32 July 2013;
4) establish national and regional consensus on the need for fresh
elections, conducted under conditions that guarantee the exercise
of the free will of the sovereign people of Zimbabwe.
To this end,
we shall engage in advocacy activities to mobilise the people of
Zimbabwe, and canvas regional and continental authorities.
the chorus of public congratulations pouring in from around us,
we trust that the essence of the preliminary reports of both the
and AU Elections
Observer Missions, has not fallen on deaf ears.
We implore and
encourage the heroic people of Zimbabwe not to lose faith and hope
in their ability and capacity to liberate themselves from fear,
from desperation, from despair and from destitution.
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