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Chigumba unfazed by Chamisa accusations

By Daniel Chigundu

Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) chairperson Justice Priscilla Chigumba says she is not intimidated by accusations being levelled against her by Nelson Chamisa adding that her works are clean.

While addressing his party’s campaign rally in Kadoma over the weekend, Chamisa accused the ZEC boss of working with Thokozani Khupe to cause confusion on the opposition voters.

Chamisa said this is being done to give Zanu PF the advantage in the upcoming elections scheduled for July 30.

However, while addressing a routine media briefing, Justice Chigumba said her hands clean and if there is anyone who is aggrieved by ZEC they are free to approach the Electoral Court for redress.

“As the chairperson of a commission tasked with running elections I don’t normally to respond to borehole-gossip and rumours, secondly I don’t work with anyone to affect anyone who has rights to participate in elections.

“The other thing, every person who was not satisfied with nomination process the law gave them room to seek redress through the Electoral Court.

“Those who were not satisfied had the right to approach the Electoral Court to register their complaints about the nomination, in fact, they had four days from the nomination day, some actually did it in Masvingo and the Court actually sat over the matter.

“So we as ZEC we say if you thought we did something wrong you had your rights under the law to approach that court so that it rectify the issues, but because you didn’t go to the court and with us saying we did everything in a credible manner, it means our work remains credible until you have approached the court and the issue is set aside,” she said.

According to Chigumba all the nominated candidates from council, Parliament and Presidential elections met the various requirements that had been set out.

She said every candidate’s papers were in order and ZEC is satisfied with its work and will not lose sleep.

According to MDC-T (Chamisa), the election commission should not have allowed MDC-T (Khupe) to register their party for elections using an open palm logo as they had already registered using the same logo.

Khupe and Chamisa are currently fighting over the control of the party following the death of founding leader Morgan Tsvangirai in February this year.

The issue is currently unresolved and is before the High Court for determination.

The ZEC chairperson, however, insisted that every nomination paper was thoroughly checked against the set requirements and they passed.

“We went to the nomination courts which determines people’s qualifications using the requirements set out by the law and these are what they look at and all the people who came here we checked their papers, nomination requirements and referenced with the law and we were satisfied as an institution that runs elections that all the candidates were successfully nominated.

“So those we have been congratulating, those whose names were published in the government gazette they satisfied us as ZEC that they had the right to be nominated,” she said.

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Daniel Chigundu

Daniel Chigundu is a male journalist in Zimbabwe and has been practising since September 2009. He used to the editor for The Business Connect (newspaper) in Harare, has his own news website Tourism Focus which is biased towards the tourism sector. Daniel is also working with Magamba Network on their project called Open Parliament where they do live coverage of Parliamentary activities on Twitter and Facebook. He is currently the secretary-general of the Zimbabwe Parliamentary Journalists Forum, is a member of Zimbabwe Small Broadcasters Association and a board member of Digital Communication Network. He holds a Diploma in Communication and Journalism from the Christian College of Southern Africa (CCOSA), a certificate in Youth leadership training from the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES), a certificate in Citizen Journalism from Magamba Network and is currently a first-year student at Zimbabwe Open University studying for a Bachelor of Arts Honours in Ethics and Organisational Leadership.

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