Tuesday, August 20, 2013

(TALKZIMBABWE) Tsvangirai dumped by key allies
This article was written by Our reporter on 30 July, at 04 : 13 AM

MDC-T leader Mr Morgan Tsvangirai has continued his solo rigging tune at a time when his allies in the NGO sector and Western diplomatic community are agreed Zimbabwe is on course to credible elections.

Yesterday, US ambassador to Zimbabwe Mr Bruce Wharton and his Swedish counterpart Mr Lars Ronnas commended the peaceful environment in the run up to tomorrow’s harmonised elections.

IT never rains, but pours for MDC-T leader Mr Morgan Tsvangirai who continued his solo rigging tune at a time when his allies in the NGO sector and Western diplomatic community are agreed Zimbabwe is on course to credible elections.Yesterday, US ambassador to Zimbabwe Mr Bruce Wharton and his Swedish counterpart Mr Lars Ronnas commended the peaceful environment in the run up to tomorrow’s harmonised elections.

The two envoys spoke as the National Constitutional Assembly, an erstwhile MDC-T ally, laid into Mr Tsvangirai for making unsubstantiated rigging claims, a position that dovetails with assessments by the African Union Long-Term Observer Mission pre-election report released last Friday.

New Ziana quoted NCA spokesman Mr Maddock Chivasa slamming MDC-T for making unsubstantiated vote-rigging claims.

“As the NCA, we are however, disappointed by recent statements by some of the participating parties who are citing vote-rigging by ZEC, a commission they set-up as the inclusive government,” Mr Chivasa said.

MDC-T, which is widely tipped to suffer a heavy defeat in the elections, has been launching vitriolic attacks on ZEC, accusing the commission of bias and being ill-prepared to conduct the elections.

Mr, Chivasa, however, said the prevailing environment was conducive for free and fair elections.

“The assessment we have done so far indicate the conditions these elections are being held under are conducive for an election and we do hope that the will of the people will be respected when the results are announced,” he said.

NCA is observing the election under the umbrella of the Zimbabwe Election Support Network.

The NCA spokesman said it was important that the outcome of the poll be respected, urging those who will be aggrieved to have their grievances addressed through the courts.

“We encourage all participants to this election to accept the will of the people by accepting the election results,” he said.

NCA encouraged all registered Zimbabweans to go out and vote, reminding them that thousands of liberation fighters fought for the right to vote.

Mr Wharton and Mr Ronnas also hailed the election environment in a meeting they held with Justice and Legal Affairs Minister Patrick Chinamasa at Zanu-PF Headquarters yesterday.

“I am excited to hear you speak about peace and calm which matches what we are seeing and I would want to congratulate the people of Zimbabwe for that,” Mr Wharton said.

Mr Ronnas concurred and urged Zimbabweans to remain peaceful.

“The climate we have seen so far has been characterised by peace and calm and we expect it would prevail in the days to come.”

The utterances by the two Western ambassadors come in the wake of similar remarks by the European Union ambassador to Zimbabwe Mr Aldo Dell’Ariccia two weeks ago when he acknowledged that the electoral environment was peaceful.

The African Union has since hailed preparations for the elections, saying Zimbabwe was on course to a credible poll, a position that flies in the face of MDC-T which has been making unsubstantiated claims of vote-rigging and intimidation, a development analysts put down to an attempt to create self-fulfilling prophecies to atone for pending defeat in the harmonised elections.

Minister Chinamasa said everything was in place for the elections and said distribution of voting materials was on course and was expected to have been completed last night.

“ZEC has been working closely with us political parties from the Special Vote, the printing of ballots, the quantities of ballots that information has been shared. Political parties were invited to where the ballots were being printed right up to their dispatch they are being kept informed,” he said.

Minister Chinamasa dismissed the MDC-T’s claims saying they were an attempt to find excuses to reject imminent defeat in the harmonised elections.

“The spirit of the gallant heroes who fought for this county’s independence will conspire against to deliver a humiliating defeat to the neo-colonialist forces here masquerading as the MDC formations,” he said.

Minister Chinamasa, who also met observers from various African countries, Comesa and the Namibian government, said there was nothing amiss in ZEC printing 8 million ballots as this had been agreed to by all parties while the Electoral Act also allowed for the printing of more ballots than the registered voters.

There are approximately 6, 4 million registered voters and some observers were raising questions on the disparity.
He, however, said every ballot will be accounted for.

Minister Chinamasa also told the observers groups that they had to take into account that Zimbabwe was under illegal sanctions when they make their reports on the freeness and fairness of the elections.

“When we are talking about freeness and fairness of elections we must know that this is a country under sanctions, where pirate radio stations are beaming into our airspace and have intensified their hate message in the lead time to the elections.

“There are also over 3 500 NGOs which are operating in the country and were established to create a false impression about human rights abuses so that they can effect regime change.

“We have gone to the elections not because we wanted but the Constitution says so. We could simply have said remove the sanctions, stop pirate radio stations and funding of newspapers before we could go to the elections,” he said.

Minister Chinamasa also told the various observer groups that Zimbabwe’s laws were clear on who was supposed to announce election results.

This followed threats by the MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai in Domboshava last week that he would announce the results illegally.

“If there are some who wish to do that and then come to you (complaining if arrested) don’t let them pull wool over your eyes. This is a law (Electoral Act) which we all agreed to and everyone must abide by it.

“If any person who is not happy with what is happening there is recourse at the Electoral Court or even Constitutional Court. If Zanu-PF is not happy they will run to the courts and I expect all other parties to do so.

“The only arbiter over these issues should be the courts. If anyone does not abide by this then the law will take its course,” Minister Chinamasa said.

President Mugabe also warned Mr Tsvangirai that he would be arrested if he were to go ahead with his threats.

Meanwhile Minister Chinamasa also met with the head of the AU observer group and former Nigerian president Olusegun Obasanjo whom he briefed on the situation on the ground ahead of the elections.

The two envoys spoke as the National Constitutional Assembly, an erstwhile MDC-T ally, laid into Mr Tsvangirai for making unsubstantiated rigging claims, a position that dovetails with assessments by the African Union Long-Term Observer Mission pre-election report released last Friday.

NCA spokesman Mr Maddock Chivasa slammed MDC-T for making unsubstantiated vote-rigging claims.

“As the NCA, we are however, disappointed by recent statements by some of the participating parties who are citing vote-rigging by ZEC, a commission they set-up as the inclusive government,” Mr Chivasa said.

MDC-T, which is widely tipped to suffer a heavy defeat in the elections, has been launching vitriolic attacks on ZEC, accusing the commission of bias and being ill-prepared to conduct the elections.

Mr, Chivasa, however, said the prevailing environment was conducive for free and fair elections.

“The assessment we have done so far indicate the conditions these elections are being held under are conducive for an election and we do hope that the will of the people will be respected when the results are announced,” he said.

NCA is observing the election under the umbrella of the Zimbabwe Election Support Network.

The NCA spokesman said it was important that the outcome of the poll be respected, urging those who will be aggrieved to have their grievances addressed through the courts.

“We encourage all participants to this election to accept the will of the people by accepting the election results,” he said.

NCA encouraged all registered Zimbabweans to go out and vote, reminding them that thousands of liberation fighters fought for the right to vote.

Mr Wharton and Mr Ronnas also hailed the election environment in a meeting they held with Justice and Legal Affairs Minister Patrick Chinamasa at Zanu-PF Headquarters yesterday.

“I am excited to hear you speak about peace and calm which matches what we are seeing and I would want to congratulate the people of Zimbabwe for that,” Mr Wharton said.

Mr Ronnas concurred and urged Zimbabweans to remain peaceful.

“The climate we have seen so far has been characterised by peace and calm and we expect it would prevail in the days to come.”

Similar remarks by the European Union ambassador to Zimbabwe Mr Aldo Dell’Ariccia two weeks ago when he acknowledged that the electoral environment was peaceful.

The African Union has since hailed preparations for the elections, saying Zimbabwe was on course to a credible poll, a position that flies in the face of MDC-T which has been making unsubstantiated claims of vote-rigging and intimidation, a development analysts put down to an attempt to create self-fulfilling prophecies to atone for pending defeat in the harmonised elections.

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Minister Chinamasa said everything was in place for the elections and said distribution of voting materials was on course and was expected to have been completed last night.

“ZEC has been working closely with us political parties from the Special Vote, the printing of ballots, the quantities of ballots that information has been shared. Political parties were invited to where the ballots were being printed right up to their dispatch they are being kept informed,” he said.

Minister Chinamasa dismissed the MDC-T’s claims saying they were an attempt to find excuses to reject imminent defeat in the harmonised elections.

“The spirit of the gallant heroes who fought for this county’s independence will conspire against to deliver a humiliating defeat to the neo-colonialist forces here masquerading as the MDC formations,” he said.

Minister Chinamasa, who also met observers from various African countries, Comesa and the Namibian government, said there was nothing amiss in ZEC printing 8 million ballots as this had been agreed to by all parties while the Electoral Act also allowed for the printing of more ballots than the registered voters.

There are approximately 6,4 million registered voters and some observers were raising questions on the disparity.

He, however, said every ballot will be accounted for.

Minister Chinamasa also told the observers groups that they had to take into account that Zimbabwe was under illegal sanctions when they make their reports on the freeness and fairness of the elections.

“When we are talking about freeness and fairness of elections, we must know that this is a country under sanctions, where pirate radio stations are beaming into our airspace and have intensified their hate message in the lead time to the elections.

“There are also over 3,500 NGOs which are operating in the country and were established to create a false impression about human rights abuses so that they can effect regime change.

“We have gone to the elections not because we wanted but the Constitution says so. We could simply have said remove the sanctions, stop pirate radio stations and funding of newspapers before we could go to the elections,” he said.

Minister Chinamasa also told the various observer groups that Zimbabwe’s laws were clear on who was supposed to announce election results.

This followed threats by the MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai in Domboshava last week that he would announce the results illegally.

“If there are some who wish to do that and then come to you (complaining if arrested) don’t let them pull wool over your eyes. This is a law (Electoral Act) which we all agreed to and everyone must abide by it.

“If any person who is not happy with what is happening there is recourse at the Electoral Court or even Constitutional Court. If Zanu-PF is not happy they will run to the courts and I expect all other parties to do so.

“The only arbiter over these issues should be the courts. If anyone does not abide by this then the law will take its course,” Minister Chinamasa said.

President Mugabe also warned Mr Tsvangirai that he would be arrested if he were to go ahead with his threats.

Meanwhile Minister Chinamasa also met with the head of the AU observer group and former Nigerian president Olusegun Obasanjo whom he briefed on the situation on the ground ahead of the elections.

TH-TZG


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