WITH only a few hours to go to the crucial general elections, MDC-T spokesperson Douglas Mwonzora laid out a litany of rigging accusations aimed at President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF at a press conference today.
Hazel Ndebele/Carlos Vieira
Mwonzora told a large contingent of local and foreign journalists that Zanu PF plans to deliberately slow down tomorrow’s voting process in Harare and Bulawayo where MDC-T maintains a massive support base.
Mwonzora also alleged that polling stations were being reduced in its urban stronghold constituencies.
“Just like they did in the voter registration exercise, some of the officers are going to embark on a go-slow exercise. This is calculated to disenfranchise people, particularly in urban areas,” said Mwonzora.
“We do not have an environment for a free and fair election because Zanu PF has different rigging tactics, among them is the traditional leaders in rural areas who are, as I speak, having meetings with villagers directing them to vote for Zanu PF. This is a violation of the law according to Chapter 15 of the constitution,” he said.
He said his party is in the process of gathering names and locations of chiefs who had received incentives to force villagers to vote for Zanu PF.
Mwonzora said state security agents have also been made election officers to rig in favour of Zanu PF.
MDC-T election agents, he said, had been reduced to two per polling station as opposed to four the party wanted to deploy.
In addition, MDC-T had still not received a copy of the voters’ roll, whether a hard copy or electronic version, on the eve of the elections.
Mwonzora also charged that aspects of social media such as WhatsApp and bulk SMSes had been tampered with further eroding the environment for a free and fair poll.
“We are prepared to accept the results of a free and fair election, but we are not prepared to accept fraud,” he said.