MDC-T deputy president and former Deputy Prime Minister Thokozani Khupe has said Zimbabwe should learn best practices on holding free and fair elections from Madagascar.
Contributing to debate in Parliament on the Madagascar elections, Khupe, who was part of a Sadc Parliamentary Forum that observed Madagascar elections in December last year, said Zimbabwe still had a lot to learn to avoid holding sham polls.
“There were live debates on television and all candidates were given equal time on air to sell their manifestos so that people were able to vote without fear or favour,” she said.
“So every candidate had an opportunity to talk about their manifesto and even when it came to rallies, every political party held their rallies at any time.
“There was no issue of you going to the police and asking for permission and so forth and so on.
“They were just holding their rallies and road shows at any time and they tolerated each other. These are some of the best practices that we are talking about.”
Madagascar’s former Finance minister Hery Rajaonarimampianina won the December presidential election — the first to be held in that country since a 2009 coup.
Khupe said there was a door-to-door voter registration process and every registered voter was allowed to freely cast their ballot.
“Members of all political parties are allowed to watch and witness the counting process. I hope and trust that as Zimbabwe, we will learn from these best practices, especially when it comes to voter registration and the door-to-door registration that I mentioned,” she said.
“The issuance of voting cards I think that is one of the things, we do not want the use of voting slips Madam Speaker. As you know, in Zimbabwe, more than a million people voted using voting slips and some of them were not even on the voters’ roll.”