MDC-T youth leader Happymore Chidziva has challenged President Emmerson Mnangagwa not to be influenced by partisanship when selecting the new Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) chairperson, saying next year’s elections should be held in a credible manner.
BY OBEY MANAYITI
Chidziva said for long, elections in Zimbabwe have been marred by bias, as the electoral mother body allowed itself to take sides in the management of the polls.
Mnangagwa is expected to replace former Zec chairperson Justice Rita Makarau, who left in a huff early this month after “voluntarily” stepping down a few months before the elections.
“We want a competent person to replace Justice Rita Makarau as Zec chairperson. We believe for this country to move forward, we just need our citizens to be allowed to choose for themselves how they want to be led,” Chidziva said.
“We are a democracy and all the principles of a democracy must be followed and if that happens, we will not have to go the extra mile in trying to defend the vote.
“However, we know the kind of people we are dealing with and this is why we are pushing for certain electoral reforms to be implemented, so that we have a level playing field.
“Zimbabweans must go to these polls freely, knowing that the youths of this country will do everything possible to ensure that elections are violence-free. The same message goes to the traditional leadership, security services and all Zimbabweans in general.”
The MDC-T youth boss said as they go into the campaigning period, youths should not be used to perpetrate acts of violence against fellow Zimbabweans.
He said they would be on the lookout for any rigging plots and were ready to expose all malpractices that could potentially endanger credible elections.
“Should Zanu PF refuse to leave, Zimbabweans will drive them out. We drove Mugabe the person out and we will also do the same to Mugabeism. We are a peaceful nation, but we are also people who want our rights to be respected. We will fill the streets with masses and make the nation ungovernable. We will never be victims of electoral manipulation again, not in our time.”
Chidziva said in 2017, MDC-T youths played a critical role in voter education and mobilisation, ahead of and during the biometric voter registration process exercise.