US doubtful on free, fair polls

THE United States and international civic organisations are piling pressure on President Robert Mugabe to hold free and fair polls, but hinted it was difficult for Mugabe to relinquish power if he lose in the forthcoming harmonised elections.

REPORT BY STAFF REPORTER

Giving testimonies in Washington during the US Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee hearing on Zimbabwe, organisations represented said prospects of a free and fair election were low due to increased intimidation and influence of the army chiefs.

The army bosses have declared their allegiance to Zanu PF.

Chair of the subcommittee Senator Christopher Coons said there was growing concern on government’s untruthfulness to Sadc and the international community to ensure free and fair elections in the country.

“I am concerned by recent reports that the Zimbabwean government is not working in good faith with Sadc and other international partners to ensure these elections will be free and fair, especially considering the lengths to which Mugabe and his Zanu PF loyalists went to preserve power in 2008,” Coons said.

“I am also alarmed by the uptick in targeted harassment and intimidation of the civil society leaders and human rights defenders who are seeking to ensure a just contest. Leaders of the security forces are openly partisan and using their positions to suppress democratic expression, and there are reports that diamond revenues are being diverted to the security forces for political purposes.”

Todd Moss of the Centre for Global Development said it was too late to guarantee free and fair elections in Zimbabwe.

“It’s already far too late for a free and fair election in 2013. The Zanu PF intimidation machine has been running full steam for the past five years and the systematic campaign of fear is already in place. Thus we shouldn’t be surprised if election day passes peaceably,” Moss said.

“Even if Mugabe somehow loses, Zanu PF won’t allow Morgan Tsvangirai to become President. We know this because it has already happened in 2008. And if the outcome is already decided, then how can we possibly ever declare it a competitive election?”

He said the US government should stop being passive and “get creative.


“Zimbabwe doesn’t want to remain a pariah state, so let’s leverage that. Refuse to endorse a sham election.”

He said the US must not rush into normalising relations with Zimbabwe until reforms are met.

Human Rights Watch Africa division senior researcher Dewa Mavinga said the US must work in the best interests of Zimbabwe to minimise the risk of sliding back to 2008 crisis.

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20 Comments

  1. Time is ticking away!

  2. takeiteasy marcaves

    That is very funny. So America is the author of these nonsense reforms, its now very clear. Does america have the people of this nation at heart? Why having sleepless nights about our affairs? Is it President Mugabe alone who should make the election free and fair? After all what do they mean by free and fair? In Zimbabwe elections will be regarded free and fair if their project wins (MDCt). If ZANUPF wins the election will be not a free and fair one. The same americans still maintains their ZIDERA sanctions to weaken ZANUPF and talks about reforms. Are sanctions not part of the GPA condition to be met by their project? Christopher Coons must know that Zimbabwe will never and shall never be an american region where he can dectate what we should do and what we should not do. With their sanctions or without ZANUPF will still win and throw their project to the dust bins.

  3. Ndezvenzeve meso anoona.

  4. Takeiteasy you are still living in the past. You have the temerity to type on a site like this where you say why should America worry about Zim and you don’t get concerned when trouble comes to China as a market for our goods. It is all about interdependency that even those people we grew up being told are our oppressors are as important as my gone grandmother. We are using other people’s currency right now not as a choice but necessity. We cannot be seen going up an anthill shouting pasi naZuma, Obama, Khama and the like. If you are a dumped baby, if we decide to give you goat milk to make you live so be it. But when you grow up you cannot blame us for keeping you alive through goat’s milk.

    What is wrong with the securocrats declaring that they will work with anyone chosen by the people to move the country forward? Saka vaMugabe voti pasi dhii zvotonzi Constitution is suspended tombotonga isu vana Chiwenga tichiona kuti musangano wedu wagadzirisa kuti ndiani achaita takeover. Saka kana vazopera vese vakaenda kuhondo then those who did not go to war shall then find who to govern Zimbabwe. Is that so? Ipapo we won’t be compatible nedzimwe nyika because we will be left behind in terms of development.

    Do you realize that Zimbabwe has more people who are outside the country because of the economic situation than those people who left the country because of the war of liberation? Food for thought!!!

    1. jabulanikulekani

      You talk sense bro.

    2. Mangwende we Zimbabwe

      No, we cannot afford to late Zimbabwe being a colony of the West again. We made our point clear that we do not need these pompous Americans or British but they still feel that they are superior. Some of us do not forget slavery that easily.

  5. Mind y business america nechimutengesi dewa.w manage our own affairs,makauraya vanhu kuiraq saka wht cn u tell us

  6. Really Zimbabwe belongs to Zanu-PF.

  7. No normal person will ever vote Zanu pf! People are now very clever, we do anything to please Zanu pf but come election time we vote MDC-T.

  8. Who doesn’t other people,s business.Inga Zim yakapindira nyaya yeDRC wani?Elections is about people,s choice,some te guys who make noise about being war vets fought from 1973 to 1980 with a single AK47 magazine that was never used in contact with the RF enemy.

  9. Tendai Chaminuka

    Doubting Uncle Sam has hidden intentions

  10. A lot of people are going to fail to register as voters because of the behavior of some elements in zec aligned to zanu pf .That is one area where elections are not going to be free and fair.

  11. Zim is for Zims. USA is for Americans. Why meddling in our affairs? Guys Zim ndeyedu. Ngavatisiye maAmericans. Pasi nazvo zve bullying small states/ countries

  12. Zimbabwe belongs to Zimbabweans not Mugabe or Tsvangirai. We don’t live for the past bt for future…… Life’s for living…… Abaiwa ngaabude

  13. @rtk ndizvo

  14. Project failed! Normal according to whose standard?Research will reveal that the main supporters of regime change in zim are remnants of ZUPO,UANC,RF who were never ZANU PF but at independence jumped ship to join Zpf to destabilise the party from within!While we appreciate evolution of democracy in Zim some of us are sceptical knowing clear that the forces against our liberation hve regrouped! Until then,true democracy will evolve in Zim!

  15. Moyo, above, Americans can not leave you alone as you are using their dollar and oftenly food handouts, you still have a lot to learn and understand in this world…..

    1. Hanzvadzi, we need help to ensure that our election is free and fair. Have you not seen the long lines to register to vote? Rubatsiro harusarudzwe

  16. Any one who stl Suport zanu pf in this day and age nids spiritual deliverance and a physchiatric chek up…Wat future cn kum frm thoz old dying so called leaders who cnt evn use a laptop..

  17. Revai chokwadi

    Let Obama clear his mess he did in Iraq , afganstan, Libya , Eygpt,Syria, Yemen ,turkey before he comes to ZIMBABWE.

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