Elections: Chamisa in race against time



The opposition Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) leader Nelson Chamisa is racing against time and now pinning his hopes on the Electoral Amendment Bill now before Parliament to bring in electoral reforms ahead of elections, observers said yesterday.

The observers insist that the opposition took time to push for reforms and pinning hopes on the Parliamentary exercise days before elections is an act of desperation.

Zanu PF enjoys a comfortable Parliamentary majority to push for a favourable law ahead of polls while the opposition numbers are depleted.

Chamisa yesterday rallied lawmakers to fight for reforms that will see the outcome of elections acceptable to all parties.

The opposition leader has refused to accept the results of the last elections.

“May Zimbabwe never miss this special moment and opportunity to deal with all the challenges that undermine the credibility and legitimacy of our elections,” Chamisa said.

“As MPs are girding their loins to debate this bill, it’s important to consider the right to vote, especially the diaspora vote. Access to and audit the voters’ roll which must be verified, approved and signed off by all contesting parties and candidates before the election,” he said.

Chamisa is also pushing for real time announcement of the election results, security of the vote and voter registration among other reforms.

Observers however described his push and the whole process as futile and “a bit too late.”

Political analyst Rashweat Mukundu said Zanu PF is not prepared to reform and follow recommendations by regional and international bodies hence the Parliamentary process is an exercise in futility.

“There is nothing about those reforms that will speak to the democratisation of the process,” he said. “What we are seeing is rather an entrenchment of political control and capture of the process by Zanu PF. These electoral reforms fall far short of either the recommendations by observer reports of 2018 and by the opposition in terms of transparency and the independence of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC).”

“There is nothing to celebrate as long as Zanu PF and its Parliamentary caucus are not prepared to listen to concerns by observers including SADC, the African Union and opposition. This is, for a lack of a better word, a waste of time really,” he said.

Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition Director Blessing Vava said the exercise was unlikely to yield results.

“They are just doing it to tick the box,” he said.


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