By Tariro Senderayi
THE main opposition party, MDC-T insists that it has put in place efficient mechanisms to eliminate fraud in the 2018 harmonized elections.
Since its formation in 1999, MDC-T has given the ruling party a headache and a tough time during elections to the extent it had majority seats in the Seventh Parliament of Zimbabwe.
The main opposition party claims that since their formation they have been winning elections and President Robert Mugabe has remained on the golden throne because of stealing elections or ‘rigging’ for lack of a better word.
Party spokesperson Obert Gutu recently assured the electorate in a statement adding that MDC-T has plugged all the holes for 2018 elections and that the ruling party’s days of vote fraud are a thing of the past.
He has said “…against all this doom and gloom, however, the suffering and toiling masses of Zimbabwe should never, ever lose hope.” Furthermore, “the MDC is very glad to announce that we have taken adequate and appropriate measures to ensure that the 2018 elections cannot be rigged.”
Gutu’s statement comes at a time when opposition parties in the country are deep in a storm of squabbles over the proposed grand coalition or electoral alliances.
In as much, as assurance is being given by the opposition to electorate that the elections shall surely be free and fair, there are questions that remain unanswered, for example have they done enough to ensure that people have been mobilized to register to vote in in 2018, considering that ZEC is compiling a fresh voters’ roll?
And in light of making sure that they are the party of choice have they adequately appealed to minds and hearts of the electorate? Have they adequately tackled the rife voter apathy amongst some of the electorate?
There are so many migratory factors besides placing preventatives in place to circumvent vote fraud which need to prioritised. ZEC is opening its doors to register voters using the Biometric system and how much has been done to mass mobilize people to register to vote?
They also need to keep in mind that despite the fact that many people are disgruntled by the failure of the government to stir the country out of the economic crisis, these disgruntlements do not naturally translate into opposition votes during elections.
The opposition especially MDC-T will also need to convincingly explain to the electorate why most local authorities under their officials have performed dismally and below expectations.
There are so many factors at play and despite the MDC T sitting in its comfortable plush chair because of the apparent strides it has made to keep vote rigging at bay, more effort should be channeled towards adequately informing the voters on why they are or should be the party of choice. Preventing vote fraud cannot be a stand-alone to guarantee the opposition a landslide victory in the 2018 harmonized election.