BY BLESSED MHLANGA/ VARAIDZO MUDEVAIRA
ZANU PF faithful have unwittingly disclosed that they were given fake national identity (ID) cards to cheat in the party’s internal elections, a revelation that renders credence to opposition claims of vote rigging in national polls.
The claims were made at a recent Zanu PF event in Epworth near Harare where party members gave evidence on how they rigged primary elections in favour of 2018 parliamentary candidate Kudakwashe Damson.
In a video that was shot three days ago, but was released yesterday and has gone viral, Zanu PF supporters confessed how they used fake ID cards to steal the election.
“We are the ones who gave birth to Damson as we used to love him. Nobody would talk about Damson negatively and not fight with us. When he became a shadow MP we stole the polls, we are the ones who set the game.
“We would get children into the polling station with fake identity cards. This is why we are calling for a rerun of the polls, because we stole the polls, he did not win,” said an unidentified woman on the video.
Damson, however, while confirming that the vedio was authentic, dismissed the rigging claims as false and meant to stop his campaign for provincial office.
“There is nothing like that. They have been paid by another group to soil my name. If you ask a simple question, where were they all along just so they resurface now because we are now having provincial elections?” Damson said.
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Zanu PF holds provincial elections tomorrow.
Former Zanu PF youth political commissar Godfrey Tsengengamu, who campaigned for Damson alongside the expelled Lewis Matutu, confirmed the dirty politics in Zanu PF.
“These confessions are nothing new. These Zanu PF guys can do anything and they steal polls internally and mostly because they know that no results are overturned. It is very rare for results to be overturned in Zanu PF so they employ all manner of dirty tricks to get power,” Tsenengamu said, adding that the internal rigging mechanisms usually spilled to national polls.
Zanu PF director of information Tafadzwa Mugwadi, however, dismissed the video, saying it was meant to tarnish the image of the party by blaming it for the “death of the opposition”.
Zimbabwe Election Support Network (Zesn) chairperson Andrew Makoni said the revelations were disturbing and urged the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) to provide a biometric voter’s roll to allay fears of rigging.
“The voters roll which Zec will be using on election day is the exact same one which they should give to all stakeholders, in that it should have all the biometrics, this helps in bringing confidence to the electoral process,” Makoni said.
Zesn has in the past called for an overhaul of the voters roll following claims that it contained names of ghost voters.
A 2011 review of the voters roll showed that a third of registered voters were dead. Last month, Zec announced that it removed 22 000 deceased voters from the roll.
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