Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai yesterday said his MDC-T party had evidence that Zanu PF youths voted during the two-day special voting exercise that was marred by chaos.
Nduduzo Tshuma/Blessed Mhlanga
Tsvangirai told a rally in Nembudziya, Gokwe, that the confusion that characterised the elections meant for police officers, other members of the armed forces and civil servants who will be on duty during the July 31 elections, was actually planned.
“They want to steal the elections through the special ballot vote,” the MDC-T leader said.
“They had all the 80 000 ballots, but what their intelligence
told them was that the police also wanted change.
“They then created an artificial shortage and only released 5 000 special envelopes.”
He said Zanu PF bussed its youths to pose as police officers so as to vote in Mt Pleasant, Harare. The elections that were meant to run between Sunday and Monday only ended yesterday morning in most parts of the country amid allegations of widespread irregularities.
Meanwhile, MDC-T secretary-general Tendai Biti told journalists in Harare that although his party respected the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) commissioners, it was not happy with the commission’s secretariat, which he accused of taking instructions from Zanu PF.
“It is evident that our fears are being vindicated,” Biti said.
Biti alleged that ballot boxes from Mashonaland Central were mixed with those meant for Masvingo.
He said polling agents from MDC-T were turned away at some station on “flimsy” grounds that they had not been accredited.
“There is a serious disconnect between ZEC and its staff,” he said.
“The constant abuse of the law has arrested this election from day one.
“There was clear breach of the secrecy of the vote as at some centres they were called by their names and told to come and vote,” Biti citing Mt Pleasant and Main Hall polling stations, said.
“It is unacceptable and illegal. ZEC discarded the voters’ roll and is using illegal election practices,” he said.
ZEC chairperson Justice Rita Makarau said she could not comment on the matter as she was busy in meetings to review the special voting exercise.
But Zanu PF spokesperson Rugare Gumbo defended ZEC and accused the MDC-T of delaying the special vote.
“The problems that ZEC is facing emanated principally from the MDC-T in particular with their delays in providing candidates they wanted in the ballot papers,” he said.
“ZEC is a professional organisation headed by two professional women. If one does not provide candidates, what do they expect ZEC to do? We are not perturbed by the MDCs mantra.”
Biti queried why 70 000 applications had been made for the special voting exercise when the police had an estimated contingent of 45 000.