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Archive for the 'Elections 2013' Category

2013: The Defining Year for Zimbabwe Going Forward – MPOI Public Seminar

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Tuesday, November 26th, 2013 by Amanda Atwood

Mass Public Opinion Institute (MPOI) Public Seminar

Topic: 2013: The Defining Year for Zimbabwe Going Forward
Venue: New Ambassador Hotel, Harare
Date: Thursday, 28 November 2013
Time: 1730 to 2000 hours


1.    Mr Psychology Maziwisa: ZANU-PF Deputy Director for Information and Publicity
2.    Mr Douglas Mwonzora: MDC-T Spokesperson
3.    Mr Takura Zhangazha: Social Analyst

Chairperson:    Mr. Herbert Ndoma

Admission:    FREE. ALL ARE WELCOME!

For further enquiries please contact: Mass Public Opinion Institute: 771358/758700/ Cell: 0772 100 409

Police clearance has been granted

‘Could it be that public opinion is “the missing link” in the democracy debate in Zimbabwe, and indeed, in Africa today?’

Zimbabwe is like a scattered sheep herd with a hyena playing shepherd

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Tuesday, September 17th, 2013 by Fungayi Mukosera

I am one of the people who believe that the 31 July 2013 election in Zimbabwe was stolen. First, by the obvious facts that all the SADC prescribed reforms have not taken place and for a simple reason that the electronic voters’ roll cannot by now be made available to the general public. The MDC-T leadership has taken the fore front in the fight for justice to capture back the looted vote that was taken from the people. People in return have taken a back seat on the issue and therefore continuously ask the question of ‘what is the way forward’. The MDC to my own understanding does not have the answer to that question; on Saturday during their anniversary rally they failed to answer that question. I was listening to ‘Your Talk’ by Temba Hove on 1st TV and the same question today is being asked by people.

On 3 September when Morgan Tsvangirai visited the Glenview 29 at Chikurubi, he failed to answer that question and said, “We will be visiting them, we will be visiting the chairman of the SADC, the chairman of the Troika, the Facilitator. Just to say perhaps you arrived at this conclusion erroneously. Whether they are going to review it that’s neither here nor there but what I want to do is to engage SADC, we can’t avoid engaging SADC about the facts on the ground. Whether that will have an effect, that’s a different matter.” This response to me meant that his party is not sure of what they will be lobbying for with the SADC bodies. In fact he has a conviction that their presentations to the SADC arms will be rather persuasive to alter any position that has so far been endorsed by the head of states.

On the way forward by the people in Zimbabwe, a reporter asked if people could expect an Egypt and he said, “Why should we have an Egypt and why should the MDC craft an Egypt style revolution? I have said it before that you don’t act in emotion, you act with conviction. That’s a more sustainable basis than to act with emotion. I believe further consultation with the people will reveal that the struggle has to continue but it has to continue with more conviction. People want instant coffee; they want instant solution to their plight … But unfortunately in the nature of a struggle where we are fighting a dictator using democratic means is not as instant as they expect. And I’m sure that they have to budget for even for a long haul.” The reporter quickly picked it up that there is no tangible plan that the people of Zimbabwe should anticipate from the MDC-T that can stand as indemnity to their lost cause and asked if the people should now wait for the 2018 elections for his party to bounce back with a plan and h said, ” No, no, no, we don’t plan for 2018, we plan for every eventuality.”

I am personally of the feeling that the people of Zimbabwe are all alone in their battles and there is no other way to take what rightfully belongs to them but to just wait for the hand of God to remember the land. The least thing that the MDC should have done is to organise people in the most peaceful way (not the Egypt) like they did on the 14th anniversary and make public illustrations loud enough to reach all SADC countries to show that the people of Zimbabwe are in great mourning.

Politics is for the people, of course they have got leaders but the biggest conveyors of any kind of message in the movement are the people. If the leadership, like the MDC-T’s says they can go it alone without the people like they did, it’s either that they have to have a concrete and fruitful plan or risk to lose the people.

The MDC is over

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Friday, September 13th, 2013 by Michael Laban

The MDC is over. Ran three times. Their leader lost every time. They took power last time, became the ruling party, and managed to do nothing for democracy (plenty for themselves as individuals). They took the major cities every time – and again failed to make a serious democratic change every time.

And they deserved to lose. Not that the real loss is by as much as the reported margin. But they failed to campaign. Throughout their time as Ruling Party. Shocking loss of focus on the big picture. They deserved to lose.

They lost when they became a political party. Changed form being a ‘movement’ for democratic change, to the political party ‘Movement for Democratic Change’. A movement is a broad based, social, economic, cultural opinion. A voice, capable of saying all things, including all points of view, embracing all methods, being all things to all people. A Movement. A movement can be anti. E.g. the anti-apartheid movement. The anti-poaching movement. The anti gender violence movement. A political party is an organisation whose aim is to take and retain power. It does need discipline. And it needs an objective. What to do with the power it takes. The MDC had none of that. No discipline. No objective (and ‘anti’ is not an objective, it must be ‘for’). And it lost it’s broad base of support – although it did have massive support.

However, the struggle for democracy has thrown up many organisations. And they have all moved further along the road to democracy than the organisation that came before it. The Forum, and ZUM, both got further towards democracy (real democracy) than those previously. There is a wave effect. Started small, and each succeeding opposition movement goes further towards unseating the one party state than the one before it.

So maybe the next one…

Fatten the lion and starve the impala and call it preserving the ecosystem

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Wednesday, September 11th, 2013 by Fungayi Mukosera

Have you ever wondered and come to a reasonable explanation as to why it is very easy for EU and America to engage Zimbabwe on economic talks like the ones that were held in London in March 2013 but very difficult to engage if it comes to good governance? As we speak the EU website actually confirms that they are in ongoing economic talks with Zimbabwe but there is only passive mention of good governance and respect of human dignity as pre-requisite.

Is this not a move to fatten the lion and starve the impala and call it preserving the ecosystem? If they acknowledge that the government in Zimbabwe is illegitimate and does not represent the will of the people then what does it mean if they keep pushing to engage an illegitimate regime? Are they fattening and empowering the oligarch in Zimbabwe to trample on the defenseless populace? I guess this is the complicated part of sovereignty but the complication as it stands is a deliberate attempt to prey on the ordinary citizens.

One way ticket outta here!

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Monday, September 2nd, 2013 by Marko Phiri

I have a friend of mine, a very sensible man who loves his country Zimbabwe very much.

A few years ago he left the country to pursue further studies abroad, made frequent visits back home and always talked about returning to work here, explaining that living in a foreign land was just too much for him.

Not an unusual story for many Zimbabweans scattered across the globe.

So this buddy of mine made that visit back home again in time for the July 31 elections which he says this was an opportunity for him to contribute towards voting for something that would give him the hope of returning to his motherland so long yearned for.

We met again after the “official” results were announced and his dejection was palpable.

“I’m buying a one way ticket back to Europe,” he said to me.

“I do not see any reason to come here anyone,” he said, expressing what he said was a common sentiment from Zimbabwean colleagues abroad who had kept in touch with him to follow the July 31 poll.

The colleagues keeping a pulse on developments back home were just as dejected.

It was nothing new really: the same reasons that had made them leave the country were only being extended now, they figured, deflating all the verve they ever had about very voluntary repatriation of the kind preached by Marcus Garvery.

Imagine anyone vowing they will never return to their homeland as long as so-and-so is alive?

Even in villages as we know them this said a lot about the individual so despised, but the that’s what this country has become.

It’s heart-rending stuff because these are folks who have mothers and fathers still alive in Zimbabwe, siblings, nieces, nephews they will only see on the day they have to fly in for a relative’s funeral.

Nothing new there, yet the fact that they had expected a homecoming of sorts only serves to re-ignite and re-imagine the misery of Zimbabwe’s Diaspora.

Some guy left for South Africa in the late 1980s only to return back to Bulawayo more than a decade later, and when he saw a teenager who was always hanging around in the house excitedly shadowing him he asked: “Who is this guy?” He was told: “He is your younger brother, you left when he was four!”

These are stories that have shaped the narratives of many families in the past 15 or so years, and while the anecdote above is based on a chap who left long before the chaos of post-2000, it is a story that has poignant resonance for many, including the “educated” guy who years for that return home but asks himself: “if I got back to Zimbabwe, am I going to be able to purchase a descent home, a descent car, is there anything called mortgage in my country,” yet he is part of millions who have been told that no one forced them out of the country, that they are always free to come back.

It is then understandable within that context at least why Zimbabweans living outside the country will never in their lifetimes be “allowed” to vote because as the friend based in Europe illustrated, they are eager to come back home and settle, work for their country but only when there are clear signs that there is a government that is equally interested in improving people’s lives.

These are apparently simple requests made even by those who have remained in the country amid all the chaos and deeply are concerned about, yet find denied the most basic of human rights: food, clothes and shelter despite all the rhetoric of creating a better life for all. Only the ALL in this regard has firmly remained THEM.

I found myself musing about these things recalling about what has happened in my life in the past few months.

One of those moments was when I got an opportunity to travel across the globe, and when I returned an in-law said to me: “Ah why did you return, given half the chance I would never come back.”

So it is that as I reflect about the future, the guy who said to me he is buying a one-way ticket back to Europe is not alone after all: ordinary struggling Zimbabweans would leave given the opportunity.

Me? Well I’m sure sticking around.

It’s a tough life.

Zimbabwe council run-offs, but no results

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Friday, August 30th, 2013 by Amanda Atwood

The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) released the results of the local government contests of Zimbabwe’s 31 July Harmonised Election on 15 August.

As SW Radio Africa reports,

According to figures released by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC), candidates representing Robert Mugabe’s party now dominate the country’s rural and urban councils, having won 1,493 out of a total 1,958 wards. The MDC-T won 442.

Since 15 August, we have been trying, unsuccessfully, to get these results from ZEC, so that we may share them with the public.

Presumably, official election results are public information. They tell the public useful things like:

  • Who is your councilor
  • How many people voted for which candidate

When we’ve asked them to share the results, ZEC has told us that they’re too long to publish in the press (too expensive). They’ve also failed to publish them on their website, and whilst they have said they could email them to us, they have yet to respond to numerous email and telephone requests to do so.

Meanwhile, there are council run offs scheduled for 11 September, in 3 wards where the two top candidates got the same number of votes.

If the council elections are important enough to be held, and there are resources for three run offs, surely ZEC could also share the results from the other 1,955 wards? Maybe many Zimbabweans don’t care who their Councillor is. But for those who do, and who want to engage in a democratic, participatory process to hold their elected officials to account, the first step is to know who that is.