We have a transitional plan: MDC

Chamisa-MDC-leader.jpg

In this Thursday, March 8, 2018 photo, the leader of MDC-T, Zimbabwe's biggest opposition party, Nelson Chamisa gestures during an interview with the Associated Press in Harare. Ahead of Zimbabwe's crucial elections this year, the biggest opposition party has selected a charismatic lawyer and pastor to challenge the military-backed president in the first vote without former leader Robert Mugabe in decades. (AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi)

The MDC Alliance says it has a strategy to ensure that the country’s security establishment does not torpedo the opposition coalition’s presidential candidate, Nelson Chamisa, from ascending to power in the event he wins Monday’s poll.

By Nyasha Chingono

Chamisa’s lawyer Advocate Thabani Mpofu told journalists yesterday the opposition would not use the courts to contest the result, but who instead resort to unspecified action.
Fears the security establishment will not allow Chamisa to take over the presidency should he win on Monday have escalated amid reports soldiers have been deployed in rural areas, a move seen as an attempt to intimidate the electorate.

Government maintains the soldiers are there to maintain peace. Mpofu said they feared a transition of power would not be smooth given Zimbabwe’s past history that saw serving military generals vowing to disregard an opposition victory.

“We are not thinking of going to the Constitutional Court. After president Nelson Chamisa has been duly elected, will he be allowed by the security apparatus to take power? It is that question I have come here to answer.

“There is a matrix; there is a programme in place to ensure that the will of the people is respected. So perish the thought that people can cast their vote and that there is someone, somewhere that is going to negate the will of the people,” Mpofu said.

Mpofu said his statements were not inciting violence but were meant to protect Monday’s vote, a historic moment for Zimbabwe, the first election after Mugabe was toppled in a military coup last year.

“I’m not inciting anyone and I’m not saying that we will not accept anything other than a win. I am saying there is a matrix that once their vote is cast, it counts. There is something that is in place and you will see it in a couple of days.

“There are certain provisions in the Electoral Act that we are going to activate; we are not going to go to court over those issues. Those steps are going to be taken and, once those steps are taken, they are going to negate the evil in the chemical ballot paper,” Mpofu said.

Mpofu said his legal team was ready to defend Chamisa’s votes with a transitional framework having already been put in place.

He ruled out any use of violence.

“A transitional framework, one which cannot fail, has also been put in place. To that end, I wish to assure you, on my name and honour that I and our legal team are going to superintend over the imminent smooth transfer of power to the incoming President.

“The necessary assurances from the security apparatus are to hand as they exist as a matter of law. Power will be relinquished. Power will be taken, even though mountains are moved albeit this shall be a peaceful and tranquil process,” Mpofu said.

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