Zvamaida Murwira, Harare Bureau
ZANU-PF yesterday took great exception to the MDC Alliance attempts to derail the July 30 harmonised elections through the use of anarchy and unlawful means.
The revolutionary party registered its concerns with the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission during a multi-party liaison committee meeting attended by all political parties contesting in the elections.
In a statement after the meeting, Zanu-PF point person on elections, Cde Munyaradzi Paul Mangwana, said the party expressed reservations on threats being made by some political parties in a veiled reference to the MDC Alliance.
The MDC Alliance has over the past few days threatened to besiege Zec offices, accusing the electoral body of being biased, saying they would not budge until their concerns were addressed.
“Zanu-PF noted and registered its objection to the aggressive language used by other parties in threatening to halt a proclaimed election through unconstitutional means,” said Cde Mangwana.
Outlining issues that were agreed upon, Cde Mangwana said parties concurred that consensus building was easier to achieve when contesting parties agree on positions or areas of conflict themselves, and present a common position for Zec to decide rather than rush to observers before talking among themselves.
“Zec gave specimens of the actual ballot papers to parties, so those who want to test for magic or unexplained vote mutations or migrations can do so,” he said. “It was noted that they had been given the blank ballots in the past for further testing.”
“There was no objection to the configuration of the ballot itself, but it was noted that a party not taking part in the elections called PDP had made a court application challenging the current candidate configuration on the presidential elections ballot paper design.”
During the meeting, Zanu-PF acknowledged Zec’s responsibility to print, store and distribute the ballots.
“On the issue of food distribution during election period, Zanu-PF recognised the role of Government and that of the Department of Social Welfare to meet the food needs of people and groups with inadequate food provisions,” said Cde Mangwana.
“It, therefore, will not interfere with the department’s programmes, but it also does not distribute food at its rallies. It emphasised the need to distinguish between party programmes and those of the Government. The right of the President to talk about such programmes at his rallies was agreed to be a fair campaign matter for him to mention as part of his Government’s programmes.”
Zec will have to decide on a request by some parties to test samples of ballots on the election day by marking them and checking whether the mark on such guinea ballots would still be in the same place at the end of voting.
“Zec expressed no objections to providing parties with samples of indelible ink as requested,” said Cde Mangwana.