Sunday, 24 September 2017

MDC call for BVR protests - why bother if already have Winning In Rigged Elections (WIRE) strategies N Garikai

With President Mugabe and Zanu PF, we all know their intention is to rig the coming elections to ensure no regime change. They have used all manner of dirty tricks to achieve their objective included cooking up the vote count to reduce Tsvangirai’s 73% in the March 2008 election to 47% to force the run-off and then using violence to secure an 84% victory.

SADC leaders proposed in the 2008 Global Political Agreement (GPA) which gave birth to the GNU that Zimbabweans must implement a raft of democratic reforms designed to stop Zanu PF rigging BEFORE holding another election. SADC leaders have been criticized for many things as regards their handling of the Zimbabwe political crisis throughout the GNU years as the guarantor of the GPA. The one thing no one can deny is that SADC tries to get Morgan Tsvangirai and his MDC to implement the reforms but were ignored.

MDC leaders “were busy enjoying themselves during the GNU, they forgot why they were there” one SADC leaders said in sheer frustration after Zanu PF rigged the July 2013 elections.

When it comes to Tsvangirai and his MDC friends; they are corrupt and incompetent, so incompetent that there is a constant state of confusion and chaos in the opposition camp. At the heart of Tsvangirai’s political ethos is the belief that MDC can win rigged elections and hence the reason the party ignore SADC leaders’ advice to implement the reforms and not to contest elections without implementing the reforms.

President Mugabe has risen to MDC’s challenge of him losing an election he has cart blanche powers to rig. He has upgraded his vote rigging from using a loaded dice to using a dice with six on all six sides. How can he possible lose if he can recount 73% and turn it into 47% just as he cannot throw anything else other a six with his special dice!  

Instead of Tsvangirai accepting that Zanu PF cannot be dislodge from office as long as the regime has the dictatorial powers to rig the vote and thus embrace reform; he is, stubbornly, searching for ways to win the rigged elections. In his stubborn foolishness, it is not surprising that Tsvangirai has again and again contradicted himself.

Two weeks ago, MDC lodged a Court application to stop the voter registration exercise on the grounds that ZEC did not have all the BVR kits to carry out the task. A stupid move, given the exercise should have started soon after the July 2013 elections and we should now have a verified voters’ roll. The failure to produce a verified voters’ roll in the 2013 elections is one of the burning issues in that election. The regime has stubbornly refuse to release a verifiable voters’ roll to this day; the equivalent of refusing to let anyone examine the dice. The MDC should have been demand to have the voter registration started a.s.a.p. and should now, a year before the elections, be demanding a verified voters’ roll and not be the ones demanding the registration to be delayed!

The Courts have thrown out MDC’s application on the grounds that it is “not urgent”.
“People are being frustrated by the slow pace of the registration and in urban areas, especially in Harare, an average of 72 people are being registered daily while hundreds are being turned away,” complained Douglas Mwonzora, MDC Secretary General, in respond to the slow pace of the registration.
“The strategy of both ZEC and the regime is very simple they want to discourage people from registering to vote. They want Zimbabweans to give up on voter registration and therefore abandon voting altogether.”

President Mugabe knows that he cannot win a free, fair and credible elections and so he has no choice but rig the vote. Yes, one way of achieving his objective (there are many others such as buying the vote, intimidating the voters, etc. and he is using them too) is frustrating the real voters to deny them a vote and then produce a voters’ roll of fictitious voters who will then vote for him.  

By stubbornly refuse to implement the reforms before the elections MDC have made it all possible for President Mugabe to continue rigging elections and get away with it.
“We have to go into the streets and peacefully demonstrate against the attempts to steal our vote because this voter registration battle is the Waterloo and Mugabe, the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) and Zanu PF know it,” announce Mwonzora.
“People are not begging to be registered but they are demanding their right to register and vote and they must be given their rights. Shortly we are going to advise on the dates and venues of mass action and no one is going to stop us.”

So, what exactly will you be demanding Mr Secretary General of MDC, “the party of excellence,” sir? Are you demanding that the voter registration must be postpone, as you requested in your Court application? If so, how will this help the people “demanding their right to register and vote”? The people of Zimbabwe will be ill-advised joining in these street demonstrations with no clear objective.

If MDC truly believe it can win rigged elections, then the party will win next year’s elections regardless of all the Zanu PF and ZEC vote rigging shenanigans. So, what is there to protest?

It is high time people told Morgan Tsvangirai and company to stop all this nonsense of MDC will win rigged elections. Zimbabwe would have had free, fair and credible elections in 2013, at the latest, if Tsvangirai & co. had not sold-out and implemented the reforms during the GNU. Right now, the nation would be debating economic policies and nation building and not still stuck on voter registration and reforms.

The people of Zimbabwe must now demand the full implementation of the democratic reforms BEFORE BVR voter registration, rallies or anything whatsoever to do with these flawed and illegal electoral process. There is no way ZEC can produce a verifiable voters’ roll now and it is madness to contest another election with not even something as basic as a voters’ roll!

Saturday, 23 September 2017

Tsvangirai's political madness is now a serious threat to us all. Wilbert Mukori

When I was a boy I visited my Aunt, my father’s step sister, and her family in Bulawayo. Her husband worked at Ingutsheni Mental Hospital. The one image that has stayed with me all life is of this patient, strong as an ox, toiling in the hot sun watering the garden with a leaking bucket. She was soaked with water and mud.

“Once she sets her mind on doing something she will not stop,” explained my Uncle. “Watering the garden is one of her favourite chores. As long as she is not doing anyone else or herself any harm we let her.”

But why the leaking bucket?

“Well, that is part of the test. If she was a full shilling, she would ask for one that is not leaking.

“MaGumbo! (the patient’s totem family name)” called out my uncle. “Your bucket in leaking!”

MaGumbo stopped and looked at the bucket. “Aahayii!” The disappointment in her voice was palpable.

“I will carry the bucket on my head!” She said, after a thoughtful pose; setting off with renewed zeal and passion born of the lightning bolt of inspiration! She soon looked like a chicken caught in a storm, in her drenched khaki hospital drab; but toiled on regardless.

Save (Tsvangirai’s totem family name) has been told a thousand times that it is insane to keep contesting Zimbabwean flawed elections which Zanu PF is free to rig the vote and expect a difference result.

Zanu PF’s unbeatable vote rigging exploits have been graphically proven beyond all doubt in the 2008 elections. Tsvangirai polled 73% of the vote, according to Mugabe’s own inadvertent admission, but before the result was made public ZEC was ordered to recount the 5 million or so votes. After six weeks of cooking up the figures, the 73% was whittled down to 47% - enough to deny Tsvangirai an outright victory and forcing a run-off.

In the run-off, Mugabe set out to harass, beat, rape and even murdered over 500 innocent Zimbabweans for the sole purpose of forcing the people to vote for him. It worked! He overturned his 27% in March into an 84% landslide victory in June – one of the greatest vote swing in human history.

The whole world, including AU and SADC, refused to recognise Zanu PF’s 2008 electoral victory after all that blatant cooking up of the vote count and wanton violence. SADC ordered fresh elections but first the GNU was ordered to implement a raft of reforms designed to stop Zanu PF rigging the vote. Save and his MDC colleagues failed to get even one reform implemented.

SADC leaders and anyone with any common sense advised Save & co. not to contest the 2013 elections with no reforms in place because Zanu PF will just rig the vote again. If Save and many other MDC leaders did not see the futility of contesting flawed elections, a few like David Coltart, MDC Minister of education during the GNU, did.

“The worst aspect for me about the failure to agree a coalition was that both MDCs couldn’t now do the obvious – withdraw from the elections,” Coltart admitted in his recent book.

“The electoral process was so flawed, so illegal, that the only logical step was to withdraw, which would compel SADC to hold Zanu PF to account. But such was the distrust between the MDC-T and MDC-N that neither could withdraw for fear that the other would remain in the elections, winning seats and giving the process credibility.”

It was only after contesting the 2013 elections and suffering another heavy defeat that Save & co. came to their senses and agreed it was, indeed, futile to contest flawed elections. “No reform, no elections!” their respective party congresses resolved.

Sadly, they all since changed their minds, they are all going to contest next year’s elections although not even one reform has been implemented since the July 2013 rigged elections. Save, has had his three lightning-bolts of inspirations to fire him up to contest the flawed elections.

a)     Form the grand coalition, the MDC Alliance

Whilst a coalition will reduce splitting the opposition vote and thus improve their chance of winning in a few more parliamentary and senatorial seats it will do nothing to stop Zanu PF winning the presidency and overall majority in both houses. Mugabe won 62% of the votes in 2013 and a single opposition candidate would have got 38% and still lose. election.

b)     Mounted a concerted voter education and mobilization

Judging from the attendances at MDC rallies before the July 2013 elections, it is nonsense to even suggest that voter apathy had anything to do with Zanu PF’s victory. Mugabe rigged the vote, we all saw the bussed hooded Zanu PF youths who casted multiple votes, the nearly one million opposition supporters denied the vote because their details deliberately entered in wrong constituent voters’ roll, etc. The regime refused to release a verifiable 2013 voters’ roll which is the smoking gun to its vote rigging activities.

Even if one assumed voter apathy was the problem in the past, Zanu PF already taken the sting out of the opposition drive to get people to register as voters by delaying the exercise which should have started three years ago at the latest until now. There is no way ZEC, even with all the good will, can register 7 million voters in four months and produce a verifiable voters’ roll.

c)     MDC has announced it has devised its Winning In Rigged Elections strategies

These are all nothing more than the fable of mouse tying the bell round the cat.

 All Save’s lightning-bolt inspirations are no wise than maGumbo’s “I will carry the bucket on my head!” Save is going to drag the nation into yet another utterly futile election to try, for the umpteenth time, to win rigged elections.

Everyone knows that Mugabe and Zanu PF will never win free, fair and credible elections, not with their chequered record of economic failures and political tyranny. All we have to do is implement the democratic reforms to stop Mugabe rigging the vote. Of course, it is simple and very logical to someone who is sane; to the insane, there is no such thing as common sense.

“When it is full moon, MaGumbo toil away watering the garden in the pouring rain!” my uncle explained.

What is infuriate about our situation is:

1)     Save & co. did not implement even one democratic reform during the GNU because they did not appreciate the importance of the reforms; they did. Mugabe bribed them with the trappings of high office, ministerial limos, very generous salaries and allowances, a former white-owned farm for Ncube, a $4 million mansion for Tsvangirai, etc. And in return the MDC leaders kicked reforms into the tall grass.

Even when it was obvious that Zanu PF was rigging the vote, MDC leaders still refused to do the obvious thing and demand reforms because they were after the few gravy train seats Zanu PF was giving away as bribes to those who contested the flawed elections, as David Coltart has confessed. The opposition politicians are contesting next year’s flawed and illegal elections for the same scraps Zanu PF throws away.

2)     MaGumbo’s insane activity of watering the garden did no one else any harm Save & co.’s failure to implement the reforms and continues participation in flawed elections are the root cause we are still stuck with this corrupt and tyrannical Zanu PF dictatorship. Zimbabwe is in a serious economic situation with unemployment now a nauseating 90% plus, 72.3% of our people are living on US1.00 or less a day, etc. The last thing we want is another rigged election and yet that is exactly what Save & co. are dragging us into.

Contesting next year’s elections with no reforms is sheer madness. Tsvangirai & co.’s greed have dulled their minds, they cannot even listen to reason and that is why they failed to implement even one reform during the GNU and will continue contesting elections regardless how flawed and illegal the process has become. We, the people, must acknowledge Save is no longer a full shilling and stop following him blindly like sheep.

We must stand firm in our demand for reform before elections and refuse to have anything to do with the ongoing elections which we know a flawed and will be rigged.

Friday, 22 September 2017

Heal Zimbabwe Trust campaign of piety confounded by reality. Patrick Guramatunhu

A Gutu ward 6, Councillor Michael Bhema has been “exposed” for threatening community members yesterday that he will block opposition supporters from registering.
The incident reported by the Heal Zimbabwe Trust (HZT) reportedly happened at Vuzhe BC where Bhema is quoted for saying that “Zanupf will monitor the BVR process.”
Well there is a surprise, because HZT has been one of the NGOs that has invested a lot of time, energy and treasure in assuring the nation its human right and peace initiatives would heal Zimbabwe’s political wounds and deliver free, fair and credible elections the nation has been dying for. The Trust has toured across the length and breadth of the country holding football games and at the end of each game participants held hands and pledged peaceful elections.

“The country is heading for another round of national elections in 2018, HZT appeals to political parties and all interested stakeholders to uphold peace, before, during and after the election period,” said HZT in one of its recent report.  

“The organization further calls for a peaceful voter registration, campaign and voting process that allows people to freely exercise their democratic right of choosing leaders of their choice without being harassed or coerced. HZT is currently rolling out a National Peace campaign: 13 Million Voices For Peace which seeks to appeal to every Zimbabwean to pledge to uphold peace as …Peace begins with me, Peace begins with you and Peace begins with all of us…”

Heal Zimbabwe Trust own the people of Zimbabwe an explanation of what has gone wrong with its campaign in Gutu and, more significantly, assure the nation that will not happen anywhere else in Zimbabwe. People want to know that the nation will have free, fair and credible 2018 elections.

The truth is Zimbabwe’s culture of vote rigging and political violence, as so graphically brought home in the 2008 elections cannot be wished away by a simple act playing a game of football and then after the game holding hands. The problem is a lot more complex and deep rooted than that and thus demands an equally complex and deep rooted solution.

The solution to Zimbabwe’s failed political system is for us to implement all the democratic reforms designed to dismantle the de facto one-party, Zanu PF, dictatorship. We had our best chance to get this done during the 2008 to 2013 GNU when all Tsvangirai and his MDC friends had to do was implement the democratic reforms agreed in the Global Political Agreement (GPA). Sadly, MDC failed to get even one reform implemented.

The rigged 2013 elections marked the end of the GPA and the end of SADC leaders’ supervisory role in Zimbabwe’s political crisis. This is why, SADC leaders themselves wanted the July 2013 elections postponed and hence advised Tsvangirai and company not to take part in the elections.

If we are serious about ending Zimbabwe’s de facto one party dictatorship and its culture of vote rigging and political violence, which the regime needs to stay in power, then we must grasp the thorny nettle and demand the implementation of the democratic reforms. Organizations like HZT have no business raising the nation’s hopes of ending the dictatorship with their ill-advised pious but empty promises. Peace, free and fair elections, economic recovery, etc. will come from implementing the democratic reforms designed to end the Zanu PF dictatorship and not from burying our heads in the sand and hold hands in piety!