By Wisdom Mumera
Members of the civil society have accused Parliament of ignoring electoral petitions delivered to the August house adding that they will continue demonstrating until their grievances are addressed.
Speaking on the sidelines of a demonstration calling for the alignment of the Electoral Act to the Constitution, Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition (CiCZ) chairperson Rashid Mahiya accused Parliament of sitting on petitions delivered three years ago.
“Parliament was petitioned by civil society to deal with this issue of electoral reforms 3 years ago but up to now, nothing has happened.
“They are so many petitions that have been sent out by civil society because we believe that the voice of the citizens is important to give strength to the petition that’s why we are delivering yet another petition today. This march seeks to amplify the voice of the citizens and in the face of no response to the petitions we shall continue demonstrating for the electoral reforms,” said Mahiya.
Another CiZC member, Pride Mukono, accused the government of setting up rigging mechanisms saying electoral reforms were fundamental to avert such.
“We are saying soldiers should stay in their barracks not being seconded to the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC). We are saying Chigumba (ZEC chairperson) should not be traveling to Russia with Mutsvangwa, right now our question is who running elections in this country is , Is it ZEC or it’s the military ?” he queried.
The demonstration which saw members from across the civil society divide such as Transparency International, Chitungwiza Residents Trust, Heal Zimbabwe and Election Resource Centre marching in the CBD culminated with the delivery of a petition to Parliament.
The petition is calling for the alignment of the Electoral Act to the Constitution, the demilitarization of ZEC and media reforms among other demands.
President Mnangagwa has promised a free and fair election but his critics have accused him of rhetoric without practical substance towards his promises.