“Boycott March By-Elections” – Opposition Party Cites Poor Planning
Zimbabwe’s little-known opposition Socio-Economic Democrats party (ZSD) Friday called on all political parties to boycott the March by-elections, saying they were poorly planned and costly.
The country will hold by-elections to fill 117 local authorities and 28 National Assembly seats, most of which became vacant following recalls of MDC-Alliance members by rival MDC-T.
But ZSD president Nkosikhona Ndlovu said the by-elections were too costly for the country. NewsDay Zimbabwe quotes Ndlovu as saying:
ZSD is calling on all political parties to boycott the costly $1,5 billion and poorly planned March 26 by-elections. The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) has deprived thousands of prospective voters of an opportunity to participate in the upcoming by-election.
Clearly, our youths have been disenfranchised in exercising their democratic right to participate in the by-elections as enshrined in Chapter 7 of the Constitution, that the State must ensure all eligible citizens, that is to say the citizens qualified under the Fourth Schedule, are registered as voters.
These remarks are in resonance with those of opposition MDC-T led by Douglas Mwonzora, which believes the country needs to implement electoral reforms first before conducting elections.
Opposition National Constitutional Assembly (NCA) led by Professor Lovemore Madhuku, also believes the nation must not hold elections.
The party says the outcome in the current environment is predetermined as the playfield favours the ruling party.
Meanwhile, the ruling ZANU PF and opposition MDC Alliance led by Nelson Chamisa are confident they will win the elections dubbed a test to gauge the country’s preparedness to hold the 2023 elections.
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