MDC-T president Dr Thokozani Khupe Endorses ZEC

MDC-T president Dr Thokozani Khupe has lashed out at political parties that are threatening to boycott the July 30 harmonised elections saying they are confused.

Dr Khupe attacked the parties while she was addressing journalists at the Bulawayo Press Club on Saturday.

MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa has repeatedly threatened to boycott the polls.

“As MDC-T, we are contesting in this election. We are aware that there is a lot of confusion where reports are saying that some parties are contemplating boycotting this election. As for us, we are not part of that confusion. We are contesting this election come 30 July. We are calling on Zimbabweans to come in their numbers to vote for us,” she said.

Dr Khupe said the party has issues that they need to be addressed by Zec.

“As a party we have issues with Zec and we will by Monday write legally to them raising these issues. It should be noted that our issues are not in any way connected to any legal reforms because as it stands, the law states in Section 157 sub-section 5 that you cannot change anything at this stage when we are almost on the 30th. We are asking Zec to implement Section 239 of the Constitution and its regulations,” said Dr Khupe.

She applead to Government to assist political parties with resources to deploy polling agents to the 11 000 polling stations across the country.

“My party does not have the capacity to deploy 22 000 polling agents to the 11 000 polling stations, hence the appeal to Government to assist with resources,” she said.

Dr Khupe said it was in the Government’s interest to ensure that the election is not disputed and as such must assist all political parties to monitor the voting process at every polling station.

She said her party was worried about the security of the vote, hence it wants agents to be deployed to all polling stations.

“We value secrecy of the ballot and voting process but we are told that you vote with your back to the polling agents, literally in the open and we condemn that. We are calling on Zec to rectify that and we also call upon Zec to ensure that polling stations are big enough to accommodate all polling agents,’’ she said.

The MDC-T president said Zec should ensure voting facilities accommodate people living with disabilities and expectant mothers.

Dr Khupe said Zec should urgently avail a sample of the ballot paper to political parties.

She said her party was not moved by the Bulawayo Ross Camp Police postal voting incident, which has been the subject in most political debates.

“As MDC-T, we are not so much worried about the voting that happened at Ross Camp by the police a few days ago because it is provided for in Sections 71 and 73 of the electoral Act. The clause talks about the receipt of the ballot papers but does not specify when it should start. To us, that is not much of an issue,” she said.

“Our concern however is the rumour that the police officers were forced by their seniors to vote. If that is the case, we are calling upon the forced officers to use channels available to them to rectify the abuse. It is everyone’s constitutional right to vote freely,”she said.

State Media