ZEC delivered credible election

ZEC delivered credible election
Published: 17 August 2018 (235 Views)
MUTARE musician Hosiah Chipanga is known for hard hitting socio–political commentary in his songs. Though controversy has almost become his second name, some of his songs are laden with meaning.

One of his songs talks about people who wish others bad, and goes like: "Kune vanhu vakadaro, vasingade kuona vanofara, vakasvika pane vanofara vanoda kuti varwe. Vakasvika pane vanoseka vanoda kuti vacheme…".

In life there are people who are happy to see others fighting or mourning. They don't want good things to happen to others as long as they do not get credit.

This is the situation Zimbabwe finds itself in today.

When the new leadership came in November 2017, President Emmerson Mnangagwa called for elections on July 30 because he did not want to prejudice other political players by hanging on to power on the pretext of Operation Restore Legacy.

For a first in history, the country went for elections where political contestants campaigned freely without hindrance and incidence of violence.

There was no intimidation or victimisation.

Sadly, it was actually the Zanu PF leadership which almost perished in a bomb blast at White City Stadium in Bulawayo that later claimed the scalps of two security details and left 49 others, including Vice President Kembo Mohadi and national chairman Oppah Muchinguri, with serious injuries.

The election process was being administered by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC), an independent election management body.

ZEC is headed by Justice Priscilla Chigumba, whose name was among those recommended by a parliamentary committee, whose co-chair was Advocate Nelson Chamisa.

As ZEC went about its mandate to ensure a sound and credible elections, problems began.

Adv Chamisa started casting aspersions about the suitability of some ZEC commissioners. He started attacking them not because they had done anything wrong, but because Justice Chigumba and her team were steadfastly refusing to be blackmailed into bowing down to the illegal demands by MDC Alliance.

ZEC went out of the way to accommodate some of Adv Chamisa's demands, but still the MDC Alliance was not satisfied, and kept making fresh demands and recycling those previously rejected by the commission.

Indirectly, the MDC Alliance did not want to just be a contestant, but to also run the electoral process and influence a favourable outcome.

Under such relentless pressure, ZEC stood firm.

That was the MDC Alliance's first defeat.

The MDC Alliance had wanted violence to mar the pre–election period, but except the unfortunate Bulawayo incident, the campaign period was peaceful.

This was the MDC Alliance's second defeat. Came July 30, 2018, the election day, which was open to a record number of international observers and journalists.

It was a huge election and it lived to its billing. Logistically ZEC did a wonderful job. Government ensured a peaceful and conducive environment. The process may have had some isolated short-comings, but it was hugely successful and commendable. Votes turned out in their numbers to freely choose their preferred candidates. The observer missions have endorsed the outcome. The bulk, if not all of the reports concurred that the elections were held in a free and peaceful environment, making its outcome credible.

Then the announcing of the election results began and MDC Alliance was thrashed by Zanu PF which won 145 parliamentary seats against the opposition's 63.

That was their fourth defeat and panic began to creep in.

Another defeat in the Presidential race was imminent and they became restless. They decided to fulfil their pre–election threats by resorting to violence in an effort to interfere with ZEC's role to announce the Presidential results.

The security forces stepped in to quell the disturbances, and unfortunately, six people lost their lives.

Finally, the Presidential result was announced and Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa trounced the other 22 contestants.

President-elect Mnangagwa got 50.8 percent of the votes while his closest rival Adv Chamisa got a mere 44 percent.

Instead of conceding defeat, Adv Chamisa opted to challenge the electoral outcome at the Constitutional Court. It is his right, but the grounds for his challenge are shaky and I foresee a final defeat that will condemn him into political oblivion.

Meanwhile Justice Chigumba and her team of steadfast commissioners must be applauded for delivering a credible election.

Well done ZEC. We now eagerly await ED's inauguration.

- manicapost

Tags: ZEC, Election, Credible,
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