OPPOSITION parties have accused the two mainstream political parties, Zanu PF and MDC-T of monopolising the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) and leaving out other players on electoral processes in the country.
By NQOBANI NDLOVU
Speaking at a Public Policy Research Institute meeting on elections in Bulawayo on Thursday, Zapu spokesperson Iphithule Maphosa accused the two parties of exhibiting “exclusionary and misplaced feeling of entitlement tendencies”.
“We are unfortunate that among the opposition, there are the gullible ones who have fallen for Zanu PF’s divide-and-rule tactics. The MDC-T has been made to believe that they are superior than other opposition parties, simply on the basis of them having MPs in the current Parliament,” he said.
“As such, they have colluded with the regime to exclude others in their engagement with Zec. Why is it that the elections body’s so-called political parties liaison committee is only comprised of three political parties, yet we have a lot of serious political parties in the country?”
Any inter-party team comprising representatives from the three political parties in Parliament, Zanu PF, MDC T and the Welshman Ncube-led MDC have been engaging Zec on election issues including the Biometric Voter Registration (BVR) programme.
Maphosa said it was unfair and electoral fraud for Zec to ignore other parties.
“To us, the process of rigging has already started because only three political parties are the ones who are in the know of what is happening in as far as the 2018 elections preparations are concerned. Every constituency must be heard when it comes to national elections, including those represented by opposition parties currently out of Parliament,” he added.
Amos Dangwa, the president of the Economic Reform Assembly (ERA), blamed Zec for the exclusion of other political parties from the inter–party liaison committee.
“As far as ERA is concerned, there is no party which is bigger or smaller when it comes to a fair and even political field. Excluding other political parties from the election processes is tantamount to Zec’s endorsement of the three political parties ahead of the elections. Zec should rectify this anomaly as a matter of urgency,” Dangwa said.
He said if the electoral body maintains its negative attitude towards “smaller” parties, his party might be forced to seek legal recourse to compel Zec to be inclusive in its dealing with political parties.
“We expect Zec to be neutral and treat us equal all the time. Every party which is registered in terms of the laws of the country has a right to engage as well as to be engaged by Zec,” Dangwa said.
National People Party spokesperson Methuseli Moyo concurred and called for an all-inclusive election engagement so as to capture all voices and grievances.
But Zec commissioner Qhubani Moyo denied allegations that the electoral management body was sidelining other political parties.