ZANU PF Warns U.S. Over Alleged Plans To Train MDC Alliance Agents
A fresh diplomatic dispute is brewing between Zimbabwe and the United States embassy in Harare over allegations that the U.S. was sectretly planning to train opposition MDC Alliance polling agents to safeguard their vote in the 2023 elections.
On Saturday, Presidential spokesperson George Charamba claimed on his Twitter handle @Jamwanda2 that two unnamed high-ranking MDC Alliance officials approached the US embassy seeking assistance in the training and equipping of 50 election agents ahead of 2023 polls. Charamba tweeted:
CHAMISA-ASSISTED GROSS UNITED STATES INTERFERENCE IN THE POLITICS OF ZIMBABWE: On 21st September 2021, two MDC-CHAMISA officials, one very high-ranking, another standing for youth wing, approached the PUBLIC AFFAIRS SECTION of the US EMBASSY in HARARE with a request for the same to assist with the training and equipping of 50 election agents ahead of 2023 harmonised elections.
An official of @usembassyharare advised them to put together a formal request. In the meantime, @usembassyharare has begun agitating for by-elections in Zimbabwe in which it is a clear contestant through its funded proxy. Unless the two MDC-CHAMISA officials (come) out and explain themselves speedily, I will go a step further to help them out. Meanwhile, @usembassyharare needs to be reminded it is skating on very thin ice in the middle of the Savannah!!!
MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa’s spokesperson Nkululeko Sibanda said there was nothing wrong in the U.S. training MDC Alliance election agents. He said:
Charamba is speaking from a museum. Why does he think that training of election agents is political interference? It is archaic. There is no interference in the training of election agents.
He actually should be supporting it because it promotes free and fair elections. We cannot enjoy cheated elections. We need reforms that allow us to avoid disputed polls.
Different political analysts attributed Chamisa’s 2018 loss to Mnangagwa to the inadequate deployment of agents to monitor the elections at remote polling stations.
The government and Zanu PF officials have in the past attacked Western embassies, particularly the US and British, for “pushing a regime change agenda.”
Political analyst Eldred Masunungure called for diplomatic solutions to disputes warning that careless attacks on foreign embassies risk complicating the relations of the government and other States.
He added that the law prohibits funding of political parties from outside, including Zanu PF, which has, however, received funds from several governments, China included.
Zanu PF acting spokesperson Mike Bimha dismissed the claims that the governing party had received foreign funding.
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