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Letters: Cancellation of voters’ concert cause for concern

Biometric voter registaration

THE cornerstone of any democracy is measured by the ability of citizens’ legitimate freedom to participate in processes without fear and to organise for legitimate causes.

The recent cancellation of the students voter registration activation in Bulawayo by authorities is an affront to ideals of a free society.

The Election Resource Centre (ERC) had organised a students activation concert which was set to take place at Hartsfield Tshisanyama in Bulawayo on November 12. The main objective of the event was to encourage students to register to vote.

As Zimbabwe gears up and prepares for the harmonised elections to be held around July or August 2023, the recent eleventh hour cancellation of the performance does not point to an improved electoral environment. Authorities must promote an open and tolerant environment and the time is now. The freeness of the election is measured by the ability of citizens to openly and freely enjoy their constitutional rights.

ERC will continue to engage with the Zimbabwe Republic Police and relevant stakeholders to ensure that future activations are not arbitrarily cancelled. -  Election Resource Centre

Nothing to celebrate on International Street Vendors Day

MONDAY was International Street Vendors Day and we at the Vendors Initiative for Social and Economic Transformation (Viset) joined informal traders across the world in celebrating this important day.

This year’s commemoration came against a backdrop of daily harassment that traders face from law enforcement agencies, in violation of constitutional provisions that guarantee the right to work.

Viset believes that the laws governing the informal sector are not fit for purpose and are in need of urgent review in order to give recognition to a sector that now accounts for over 83% of employment, over 60% of gross domestic product as well as for the majority of money supply in the economy.

Over the past month, traders operating at Mupedzanhamo in Mbare have had their marketplaces shutdown and are struggling to eke out a living. Those in Glen View have had their trading places destroyed by fire more than three times in a year, highlighting the need for the provision of decent working spaces.

Informal sector workers continue to be left out of government issued social security safety nets, despite the immense role they play in the economy, with at most times government seeking to tax the sector as was seen in the previous budget by Finance minister Mthuli Ncube when he initiated the presumptive tax for the sector.

Multinational corporations are, however, granted tax breaks and holidays among other incentives, all in the name of being “Zimbabe is open for business”.

It is our firm belief that there can be no middle income economy by 2030 for the nation without ensuring that the growth of the sector is put at the front and centre of the nation’s economic policies.-Viset

ED is not sincere

IT is now very clear that those who forced the late former President Robert Mugabe to resign under the guise of arresting criminals surrounding him had no other intention than to usurp power and consolidate it.

It is now five years after Mugabe left State House, but we have only noticed that the so-called G40s are the only people who have been dragged to the courts week-in week-out.

Are the former ministers the only ones who caused all the suffering on the nation, as the new dispensation team would want us to believe?

As far as the ordinary people see things as they unfold, the military intervention was just a ploy to grab power from Mugabe. Even former Higher and Tertiary Education minister Jonathan Moyo stated in his Blue Ocean presentation in July 2018.

If President Emmerson Mnangagwa is an honest person, as he would want us to believe, he must ensure that all rogue elements in his administration are brought to book and shown the door to Chikurubi Maximum Security Prison.

So, Mr President, what is your next step after noticing that things are not working?

Should the masses go back to the streets to liberate themselves again?-Zvaipa Zvonzii


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