Komichi trial: ZEC official says clueless on origins of stray ballots

via Komichi trial: ZEC official says clueless on origins of stray ballots | The Zimbabwean by Edgar Gweshe 02.10.13

The trial of MDC-T national Chairman, Morgan Komichi, continued today with the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission’s Chief Inspector, Jane Chigiji saying the stray ballots that were handed over to the accused after having been picked from a dustbin could not have been issued by the commission.

Komichi, who was arrested in July, is facing charges of contravening Section 85 of the Electoral Act.

Allegations against Komichi are that, in July, he misrepresented to ZEC that he had picked a sealed tamper-proof envelope with a special vote ballot paper from a dust bin at a Harare hotel.

He allegedly approached ZEC’s command centre and alleged that an unnamed person informed him he had picked up the envelope from a dustbin. Komichi further alleged that he had opened it out of curiosity and discovered that there were ballot papers whose votes were cast in his party’s favour.

The ballot papers belonged to a police officer identified as Mugove Chiginya. According to the State, Komichi’s conduct was in violation of the country’s electoral laws.

Chigiji, during cross examination by Komichi’s lawyer, Alec Muchadehama, said the ink that was used to write on the tamper proof envelope that was brought to ZEC by Komichi was different from the one used by the commission.

“The envelope is similar to the ones which we were using at ZE. We used felt pens to write on the envelopes but this one was marked with an ordinary pen so I cannot tell this court that it is from ZEC,” said Chigiji.

She said that there was no evidence to suggest the envelope was from ZEC apart from it inscribed with the commission’s name.

Chigiji refuted Chiginya’s testimony in court when she said that some voters did not know where they were registered to vote. Last week, Chiginya told the court that he was registered to vote in Mount Pleasant during the special voting process.

She said that there were no reports of missing envelopes that were made before the stray ballots that were handed over to Komichi were discovered.



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    It’s all because of the sanctions!

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    Sekuru Mapenga 11 years ago

    A whole court room farce over a single ballot paper!! What about the 300,000 voters that were turned away from the polling stations? What about the 250,000 assisted voters? What about the Voters Rolls that were used?
    Ridiculous nonsense – that is what this trial is. Ridiculous nonsense.

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    thembani 11 years ago

    Kikiki Sekuru u are right

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    Changamire Leo 11 years ago

    Sekuru Mapenga you are very right.

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    munzwa 11 years ago

    a red herring.

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    So where did the ballot paper come from as it had the security features of the proper ballot paper. Did Komichi know the design of the paper or are these some of the alleged NIKUV papers whose origins we do not know.

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    Let us wait for the court’s ruling. They are a learned team with experience of their business. Comments after court ruling. You all seem to be one sided why?

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      The magistrate has already demonstrated a clear bias against the accused, as well as a profound lack of knowledge of the law and a suspect commitment to justice. Why should we wait to comment on what’s already clearly a farce?