Why push for early polls?

It appears the ordinary Zimbabwean is against the holding of elections next March as the politicians of this country seem to have agreed to do. The people that vote say Zimbabwe is not yet ready to hold peaceful elections and they have expressed fears of such an eventuality.

They are the ones that bear the brunt of political violence and it would be only reasonable to consider their views when the country speaks about elections. Those that push for the elections are power-hungry politicians that will be far away from violence when campaigning heats up and persuasion turns into coercion.

But it is the manipulative politicians that always have the last word. It is indeed intriguing — a frightful mystery — why and how the politicians seems to believe they have the right to impose elections on the people without considering their views.

Zanu PF, through its leadership, has always dictated on when elections should be held even when people have complained about the country’s ill-preparedness in terms of the atmosphere. The MDC has played ball by agreeing to go to the polls even when people would be complaining of violence and the unfair state of the environment.

We are, like many other Zimbabweans should be, surprised at the apparent certainty with which the parties believe they can call and cause elections to be held in this country in March, even when citizens of Zimbabwe agree with the country’s peacemakers, Sadc, that it is not possible to have free and fair elections as early as March — for various crucial reasons.

Zanu PF spokesperson Rugare Gumbo has been quoted as saying the issue of elections being held early next year was no longer debatable because his party decided to do that at its congress in Mutare last year. In fact, Zanu PF seems to favour a situation where the country will go to elections without a new constitution for which the party seeks wholesome changes before it could be accepted.

Everybody else, however, including the MDC parties which seem to be playing into Zanu PF’s hands, sees that going to elections on the old constitution was likely to revisit violence on ballot-weary Zimbabweans.

The frightening aspect of this development is the apparent intent by those that hold the real power — the securocrats — to use everything in their power to bulldoze Zimbabweans into what could likely become a violent, bloody and destabilising plebiscite.

Zanu PF chief negotiator Patrick Chinamasa, who has been on the talks front and is therefore exposed to rationality and reason, said it was not possible to hold elections this year unless somebody decided to trash the fundamental election roadmap.

He was immediately lampooned by the party’s spin doctors, Gumbo (who distanced the party from the Justice minister’s “personal views”) and Jonathan Moyo who, dismissed Chinamasa’s views as “untenable”, in other words unsustainable, weak, invalid and flawed!)

Sadc mediators, negotiators from Zimbabwe’s GPA partners, including Zanu PF, and the majority of Zimbabweans have made it clear that free and fair elections cannot be held without a clear roadmap and before a new constitution is put in place.

Elements that now emerge trying to trash all that and insisting on 2012 elections, can only have a sinister motive to do so.

Our fear is that these elements are doing so for selfish reasons and not for the good of the nation. They are very dangerous people whom Zimbabweans, the region, the continent and the world should watch because they would need to know who they are tomorrow!

1 Comment

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