Venues full but manifestoes empty ahead of Zimbabwe polls


ZANU-PF rally at Chinorumba, Zaka, Masvingo province, Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe Bureau
HARARE, (CAJ News) – IF political gatherings and rallies are anything to go by, Zimbabwe will have the tightest electoral contest in history.

Both the ruling ZANU-PF and archrival opposition Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) have filled their venues to capacity.

Incumbent President Emmerson Mnangagwa, held his star rally at Chinorumba School in Zaka, Masvingo Province while his opposition counterpart Nelson Chamisa descended the country’s fourth largest city of Gweru, Midlands province.

Both rallies were peaceful, a shift from previous elections beset by violence.

“Both political parties (ZANU-PF and CCC) successfully filled their open grounds, but the saddest thing is that they both did not tell the electorate what they will do upon being elected into office. The voters want to know what they are voting for,” said Shumirai Makavanye, a political analyst.

“The electorate wants to know whether they are voting for economic revival, job creation, service delivery, infrastructure development, better working conditions, improved salaries, respect of the rule of law, human rights, property rights, fight against corruption as well as desisting from the so-called catch and release kind of arrest when it involves ZANU-PF elite.”

Gweru-based political activist, Xolani Hlatshwayo, said, “I notice both CCC and ZANU-PF seem to have huge following making the forthcoming election a two-horse race. However, my concern is that these two leading rival parties did not tell us about their manifestos. This is where I’m deeply concerned.”

Commenting on the same topic regarding manifestos was Team Pachedu, a patriotic Zimbabwean citizens group, which claim they strive to promulgate the culture of transparency, responsibility and accountability without any fear or favour, insisting both CCC and ZANU-PF should have spoken about their manifestos.

“Major political parties (ZANU-PF and CCC) have now officially launched their election campaigns but no manifestos. Only ZANU has one, nothing so far from ZANU-PF though we are not sure they need it having failed to implement previous one (promises),” Team Pachedu tweeted.

Addressing the rally in Gweru, Chamisa predicted his victory.

“We will win, not because of our own power, but by the power of Jesus Christ,” Chamisa said.

He quoted the biblical verse on Jeremiah 1:17-19, “Arise and tell them everything that I command you. Do not be intimidated by them, or I will terrify you…They will fight against you but will never overcome you, since I am with you to deliver you.”

He added: “All we see is poverty, unemployment and millions going to the Diaspora.”

Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) star rally in Gweru, Midlands province, Zimbabwe

Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) star rally in Gweru, Midlands province, Zimbabwe

In a separate rally, president Mnangagwa said: “Many of you (voters) came out to support today. The most important thing for our country is peace.”

“Since we started this campaign (ZANU-PF) there has been peace. We have shown overwhelming support for ZANU-PF because the people know that we are working for this country. A vote for ZANU PF is a vote for prosperity. It is a vote for our future. Together we move towards elections in peace, unity and harmony.”

In the previous election ZANU–PF won by 52,35 percent with 179 parliamentary seats while the main opposition then Movement for Democratic Alliance (MDC-A) clinched 34,72 percent vote with a total of 88 seats in parliament.

In power since 1980 from colonial master Britain, ZANU-PF has been accused of economic mismanagement but the ruling party blames Western countries for sabotage after they slammed sanctions on Zimbabwe.

The United Nations has ruled the sanctions as illegal and detrimental to the population.

– CAJ News






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