THE MDC led by Welshman Ncube has rejected the outcome of last week’s harmonised elections, but says challenging the results would be pointless.
Nqobile Bhebhe/ PAMELA Mhlanga
MDC stated its position following a meeting Ncube convened for losing candidates in Bulawayo on Wednesday night for a post mortem of the July 31 polls in which President Robert Mugabe and Zanu PF secured a landslide victory.
The party did not win a single seat in the elections while Ncube came a distant third in the presidential elections behind Mugabe and outgoing Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai.
“The MDC is aware that the just-ended elections were neither fair nor free in the strictest definition of the terms and as such the outcome is not a legitimate one,” MDC said.
“That the elections were rigged is not debatable, it is a fact.
“The glaring inconsistencies in the process leading up to and during the election make it impossible to absolve ZEC (Zimbabwe Electoral Commission) or to refrain from calling the credibility of the election outcome to question.”
MDC’s position dovetails with that of MDC-T, which has accused Mugabe and Zanu PF of stealing the elections with the aid of a flawed voters’ roll. Tsvangirai has vowed to challenge the results in the courts and also take their case to the Sadc and the African Union (AU).
But MDC said taking that route would be a waste of time as Sadc and the AU had already declared the polls free and fair.
Approaching the courts would also be futile as demonstrated by cases handled by the Constitutional Court in the run-up to the polls, the party says.
“The futility of going to the courts must be read with the Jealousy Mawarire Constitutional Court (Concourt) ruling, which led to the frog-marching of Zimbabweans into an election for which ZEC was ill-prepared,” MDC said.
“It is, therefore, our well-considered view that taking this matter to court will be akin to going to Robert Mugabe and asking him to reverse his ‘victory’.
“The party has further discounted the option of taking the dispute to the regional and continental organs — principally Sadc and AU. These institutions have already made known their views about the process and outcome of the election.”
Mawarire forced Mugabe to declare the July 31 elections after he approached the Concourt.
Attempts by Sadc to convince Mugabe to seek a postponement of the polls through the
same court were ridiculed by Zanu PF.
Sources who attended the MDC meeting said there was a unanimous agreement that the party must now focus on the 2018 harmonised elections.
Edwin Ndlovu, the provincial spokesperson, said the party was regrouping and working towards the 2018 elections.
“Everyone agreed that we have to move forward and start preparing for 2018,” he said.
“It seems candidates had recovered from the loss and accepted that although the elections were stolen, we had to move on and start planning for 2018.”
Sources within the party that anchored its campaign on devolution said they entered the polls as a “dry run to 2018 elections”.
“As a party we have accepted the results, but for us it was a dry run in preparation for the next elections in 2018,” the source said.
“We are now back to the ground with more vigour and devolution will be better refined. People will hear more of Project 2018.”