The key to Zimbabwe’s economic recovery is via democratic political reform. The only reason why the latter has remained a mirage is because the opposition leaders who are supposed to delivery it are breathtakingly incompetent. They are supposed to stop Zanu PF rigging elections and it turns out they do not even know how Zanu PF has been rigging elections!
"Can I tell you one thing? The 2008 elections were rigged, but the 2013 elections were not," Temba Mliswa told Newsday. Mr Mliswa is a former Zanu PF MP and now a leading opposition leader.
"You cannot rig a Zimbabwean election. The only rigging that happens is through intimidation and violence and that is what we have to deal with,” Mliswa explained.
"That is what happens because you have your agents here and the boxes are shown. In 2013, there was no rigging. Zanu PF was smart enough from 2008 by keeping war veterans on the ground and they were leading the intimidation."
So according to this simpleton, Temba Mliswa, if there is no intimidation and violence and the opposition’s election agent(s) is in the polling station and can see the ballot boxes then the elections cannot be rigged! How naïve!
Of course Mliswa is talking rubbish; President Mugabe rigged the 2013 elections and here is some of the blatant ways he used to rig the vote:
- The failure to implement meaningful media reforms during the GNU meant that Zanu PF retained it total control of the public media. There was no freedom of expression and no free press necessary for the free exchange of ideas. Morgan Tsvangirai admitted to S W Radio Africa just before the 2013 elections that ZBC Radio and TV had never granted him or his MDC party any coverage for them to present their political programme to the nation throughout the five years of the GNU.Elections are about giving the voters a choice; if the voters are forced to hear the views of one side and one side only how can that be a free, fair and credible electoral process.
- Mr Mliswa, as a Zanu PF parliamentary candidate, received a brand new car, thousands of dollars in cash plus a load of party regalia and election materials compliments of President Mugabe. President Mugabe must have spent $4 billion, at least, in the 2013 elections. MDC-T could only afford to give its parliamentary and council candidate $700 and $100 or so respectively. This is hardly fair, particularly when it turns out that President Mugabe’s generous funding was cash, materials and human resources commandeered from State Institutions plus billions looted from Marage diamonds and other resources.
- Mr Mliswa must have been aware of the nearly one million voters country wide who were denied the opportunity to vote on polling day because their names were not in the constituency voters roll their expected. It should be noted that President Mugabe and Zanu PF candidates “won” with a margin of just over a million votes!
- In his book, The Struggle Continues former Senator David Coltart reported of “Numerous buses were seen ferrying young men into the constituency from Imbizo barracks located some 20 km from Bulawayo (Coltart’s constituency). …. In three of the polling station … .the votes cast for Mugabe were remarkably consistent: 220, 220 and 224 votes.”
- Zanu PF failed to release a voters-roll before the 2013 elections although this is a legal requirement. There is no doubt that a careful analysis of the voters-roll would have confirm the observed facts that NIKUV, the Israeli company, had tampered with the voters-roll and deliberately posted suspected opposition supporters’ detailed in wrong constituencies, see c) above, amongst the many other dirty tricks. Zanu PF has stubbornly refused to release the voters-roll because it is one of the smoking guns to how the regime rigged the 2013 elections.
Mr Temba Mliswa was not just another Zanu PF MP, he was the party’s provincial chairman of Mashonaland West before his ouster in December 2014 in the purge for VP Joice Mujuru and her supporters. Mr Mliswa should have been aware of all the five election irregularities listed above plus many more beside but he clearly was not; even with the benefit of hindsight he still has no clue how Zanu PF rigged the 2013 elections.
With unemployment a nauseating 90%, millions living in abject poverty, basic services like health and education near collapse, no clean running water, etc.; the economy is number one on the national agenda. What many people have been slow to grasp is that there will be no meaningful economic recovery as long as Zanu PF remains in power.
The people realized as far back as 2000 that Zanu PF was delivering mass poverty instead of mass prosperity the party had promised. Ever since the electorate has tried to remove President Mugabe and his Zanu PF cronies from office but failed because the tyrant has rigged the elections. We are stuck with this corrupt, incompetent and oppressive Zanu PF regime and as long as it remains in power there will be no meaningful economic recovery.
Hence the reason why political reform or democratic change must be pursued and delivery because without it there will never be any meaningful economic recovery.
There have been many opportunities to implement meaningful democratic reforms with the best of these coming during the GNU. All Morgan Tsvangirai and his MDC friends had to do then was to implement the 2008 GPA democratic reforms which Zanu PF had grudgingly signed onto and SADC was the guarantor. Not even one reform was implemented!
MDC leaders, just like Mr Mliswa here, did not understand how President Mugabe rigged elections and hence the reason they failed to get even one reform implemented.
What Zimbabwe needs to get out of the economic and political hell-hole President Mugabe has landed us is how to stop Zanu PF rigging elections so the country can finally have the meaningful political change. Clearly opposition leaders like Morgan Tsvangirai, Joice Mujuru, Tendai Biti, Temba Mliswa will never deliver any meaningful democratic reforms. They clearly have no clue how President Mugabe has been rigging elections so how can they know what reforms to implement to stop the rigging?
Zimbabwe cannot afford yet another rigged election come 2018 and risk the present economic chaos continuing or getting even worse. We need opposition leaders who know how Mugabe has been rigging elections to stop the tyrant rigged the next elections.
It was John Maxwell who said “A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way.”
We need opposition leaders who know the way out of this hell-hole; who know how to Zanu PF rigging elections!