by Tariro Daphne Senderayi
The main opposition party, MDC T has spoken boldly in light of its preparedness for 2018. MdC-T insists that it has put in place efficient mechanisms to eliminate fraud in the 2018 harmonized elections.
It would appear as though since the formation of the MDC T in 1999, the party has given the ruling party a headache and a tough time during elections over the years. The main opposition party claims that since their formation they have been winning elections and the President has remained on the golden throne because of stealing elections or ‘rigging’ for lack of a better word.
Recently, the spokesperson of the party Obert Gutu made a statement to assure the electorate that this time around in 2018, the ruling party’s days of vote fraud are a thing of the past. He has said “…against all this doom and gloom, however, the suffering and toiling masses of Zimbabwe should never, ever lose hope.” Furthermore, “the MDC is very glad to announce that we have taken adequate and appropriate measures to ensure that the 2018 elections cannot be rigged.”
This statement is in the eye of the storm that is the squabbles over the grand coalition by opposition parties. In as much, as assurance is being given by the opposition to electorate that the elections shall surely be free and fair, have they done enough to ensure that people have been mobilized to register to vote in March? And in the light of making sure that they are the party of choice have they adequately appealed to minds and hearts of the electorate? Have they adequately tackled the rife voter apathy amongst some of the electorate?
More than 62% of Zimbabwe’s eligible voters are below 40.Let’s all register to vote when ZEC kicks off biometric voter registration.
— Obert Gutu (@GutuObert) February 5, 2017
There are so many migratory factors besides placing preventatives in place to circumvent vote fraud which need to prioritised. ZEC is opening its doors to register voters using the Biometric system in March and how much has been done to mass mobilize people to register to vote? They also need to keep in mind that despite the fact that many people are disgruntled by the failure of the legitimate government to stir the country to the land of progress, that disgruntlement does not naturally translate in the opposition amassing a significant number of votes in their favour. As some public officials in the opposition parties have failed to discharge their duties in line with them being voted into public office.
There are so many factors at play and despite the MDC T sitting in its comfortable plush chair because of the apparent strides it has made to keep vote rigging at bay, more effort should be channelled towards adequately informing the voter on why they are or should be the party of choice. Preventing vote fraud cannot be a stand-alone to guarantee the opposition a landslide victory in the 2018 harmonised election.