21 January 2017
Today, 21 January 2017, there is a by election in Bikita West constituency following the incarceration of Munyaradzi Kereke who was convicted of raping his then 11 year old niece. Six candidates are vying for the Parliamentary seat and these are Beauty Chabaya (ZANU PF), Kudakwashe Gopo (ZimPF), Madock Tatirai Chivasa (NCA), Tanyaradzwa Terrence Makumbo (PDZ) and two independent candidates Heya Shoko and Innocent Muzvimbiri. Heal Zimbabwe Trust has deployed 58 human rights monitors on the ground to assess whether the election process is being held in a free, fair, transparent and peaceful manner. Below is an afternoon update of the voting process:
Pamushana Secondary school ward 32
126 people had cast their vote by 10 am (72 males and 54 females).10 people were assisted to vote (9 females and I male) due to illiteracy).
Bikita Fashu Secondary School ward 11
119 people had voted as at 10:40am (44 males and 75 females). 5 people were assisted to vote, (1 male and 4 females) because of partial blindness and illiteracy
Bikita Minerals Primary school ward 30
167 people had voted as at 11 am (102 males and 65 females). As at 11:10am 30 people in the queue waiting to cast their vote.
Bikita Minerals Recreational hall ward 30
92 people had voted as at 10 am (40 males and 52 females). 11 people were assisted to vote( 3 males and 8 females ).
Beardmore Primary school 11
171 people voted as at 11:30am (96 males and 75 females)
Guru Village polling stations ward 11
Two ZANU PF members Lydia Tavengwa and Tarisai Garai were force marching people to the polling station urging them to vote for ZANU PF. This took place around 11:20am.
Mangondo Secondary School ward 11
300 people had voted as at 12:20pm, (99 males and 201 females). 18 people were assisted to vote (2 male and 16 females).
Domboshava Primary school ward 11
215 people had voted as at 12:40pm (129 females and 86 males). 17 people were assisted to vote (13 females and 4 males). 4 males were redirected because they did not have their identity cards
Chitsanga primary school ward 22
360 people had voted as at 13:40pm (191 females and 169 males) 14 people have been assisted to vote. Voting process going on well. No cases of violence have been reported.
Bikita West Ward 5
Gift Mazhaka, a ZANU PF youth leader was moving door to door with some other ZANU PF youths threatening and intimidating villagers.Mazhaka announced that on 22 January 2016, ZANU PF plans to move around the villages beating up everyone it loses the election.
Shereni Business Centre polling station Ward 10
A former soldier only identified as Saira told voters that if ZANU PF loses the by-election, they were going to be beaten.
Mandiki Primary School ward 9
Enemy Berejena, district chairperson for ZANU PF in Bikita was ordering people to vote for ZANU PF at the polling station and highlighted that if they do not vote for ZANU PF they will face violence in the upcoming days.
Nyemba Primary School wards 9
150 people had voted by 12pm (70 women and 80 men).4 people were turned away because they were not registered.
Mukanganwi Secondary School ward 10
125 people had voted by 10am (53 males and 72 females).20 were assisted to vote (17 females and 3 males).
Charamba Primary school Polling Station ward 19
Two unregistered Toyota Hilux trucks were spotted roaming around the polling station. Voters who spoke to the Heal Zimbabwe team on the ground indicated that they felt intimidated.
Masarira Primary School Ward 22
212 people had voted as at 12:30pm (133 females, 79 males).21 people were assisted to vote due to illiteracy and visual impairedness were turned away for not having identity cards.
Mandara Primary school ward 5
A ZANU PF villager from Mandiki village only identified as Chipengo was stationed about 100m away from the polling station ordering people to vote for ZANU PF
Mupakwa Primary School ward 13
333 people had voted by 14:00hrs (216 females and 117 males).5 people were turned away because they were not registered.25 were assisted due to illiteracy while 8 were redirected.