Fungi Kwaramba 14 June 2018
HARARE – A former Cabinet minister who was at the centre of Zanu PF’s
power-retention strategies between 2000 and November 2017 has
sensationally claimed that the ruling party has devised an elaborate plan
to rig next month’s elections.
Zanu PF reacted angrily to the allegations yesterday, dismissing them as
Jonathan Moyo, a former politburo member who is currently in self-imposed
exile in Kenya, claimed yesterday through micro-blogging platform,
Twitter, that he was ready to testify under oath how Zanu PF and the
Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) were plotting to subvert the people’s
will on July 30.
He alleged that Zanu PF, which is seeking to extend its rule beyond 38
years, has been given hard copies of the voters’ roll, despite claims by
the electoral management body that they were still cleaning up the
register following the recent conclusion of the biometric voter
“Some 11 days after BVR closed for 2018 poll and a day before sitting of
Nomination Court, #Zec continues to deny the opposition access to the
(voters’) roll, yet it has given #Zanu PF hard copies. #Zec has always
done this and I can confirm it under oath,” he said.
Moyo skipped the country around mid-November last year in the wake of a
soft coup that ended former president Robert Mugabe’s 37-year long reign.
He is now wanted in Zimbabwe in connection with allegations of abuse of
office after he allegedly siphoned substantial amounts of money from the
Zimbabwe Manpower Development Fund, which he superintended over as then
minister of Higher and Tertiary Education.
The authorities have since appealed to the International Police to help
bring him to justice.
Yesterday, the former Information minister claimed that President Emmerson
Mnangagwa’s administration has roped in the Chinese – long considered to
be the country’s all-weather friends – to manipulate the voters’ roll.
“Chinese team seeks to manipulate the BVR system and create virtual
polling stations to guarantee victory for Mnangagwa, whose appeasement
strategy of disinformation would be used by United Kingdom government to
justify declaring the poll free, fair and credible!
“Government has seconded to #Zec a team of Chinese BVR and cyber experts
from the People’s Liberation Army linked to a top Chinese university.
Their remit is to manipulate the voters’ roll through shadowy and virtual
polling stations and fake voters,” Moyo said.
Contacted for comment yesterday, Zanu PF spokesperson, Simon Khaya Moyo,
said there was no way the ruling party would work with an independent
commission to steal the elections.
Khaya Moyo also denied the involvement of Chinese nationals in the running
of the polls set for July 30.
He said: “We don’t need Zec to win elections. It is all hogwash, a tired
story. They are whistling in the graveyard hoping that the dead will hear
them but, well, that is sad.”
The allegations come as the opposition is pressing for electoral reforms,
chief among them being that Zec must release a copy of the provisional
Recently, opposition parties raised concern after Zec increased the number
of polling stations by 1 137 polling centres.
Last week, the MDC Alliance piled up pressure on Zec by lodging a
petition, which came hard on the heels of a court application by Tendai
Biti of the People’s Democratic Party, demanding access to the voters’
The courts are still to make a ruling on the application.
The electoral commission has been adamant that it was premature to avail
the crucial document, adding that the additional voting stations were
designed to ensure that polling stations with an excess number of voters
have sub-polling stations.
Zec also denied the opposition access to the BVR server, saying it was a
“The issue of access to the server is controlled in the same way as is the
case with all institutions that keep custody of information of a security
or confidential nature. We also encourage stakeholders not to mystify the
issue of additional polling stations as we have allowed the creation of
sub-polling stations for a polling area where the threshold of voters
exceeds its set limit,” Zec chairperson, Priscilla Chigumba, said in a
statement released over the weekend.
However, Moyo sensationally claimed yesterday that the ruling party had
access to the hard copy of the voters’ roll in the 2013 polls
controversially won by Zanu PF, and that they worked with the military and
intelligence elements in Zec to deliver the poll to Mugabe.
He said this time the rigging will be on a “industrial scale” and will be
centred on manipulation of the BVR voters polling stations by “Zec
technical staff from security organs and also the army intimidation of
voters in villages”.
“While section 235 of the Constitution says #Zec should `protect the
sovereignty of the people’ and section 233 says it should `promote
transparency and accountability’, proof government runs #Zec is the
failure by Zec to bring to order (Zanu PF political commissar Engelbert)
Rugeje, minister of State for Masvingo province Josiah) Hungwe and (deputy
Finance minister Terrence) Mukupe!”
The named Zanu PF trio have both been quoted saying the army will not
allow an opposition victory.
“In the first 20 years of the old order, when Mnangagwa was the chief
enforcer, government ran elections through the Registrar-General under an
ad hoc election directorate and Electoral Supervisory Commission that had
election monitors as observers!
“Mnangagwa has crafted an appeasement strategy that targets the business
and international communities based on a disinformation scheme, learnt
from British intelligence in his CIO (Central Intelligence Organisation)
days, whose design is to say right things and do the opposite.
“On the back of the November coup, and the fact that Zimbabwe is under
military rule, it’s unreasonable to expect a government run #Zec to run
free, fair and credible elections. With securocrats managing its technical
operations, Zec is a rigging tool.
“Zec run by government to run elections is not set up in terms of the
Constitution. Most of its fulltime staff are former or current army, CIO
and ZRP (Zimbabwe Republic Police). All technical staff is 100 percent
from security organs and all polling officers are civil servants,” said
Pedzisai Ruhanya, who is also a scholar and researcher, said even though
Zec denies a connection between it and the army, history was replete with
examples of such associations.