The opposition MDC-T has said that it will boycott early elections after President Emmerson Mnangagwa said that elections will be held before July. The opposition urged people to ignore Mnangagwa’s remarks at the ongoing World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland. The opposition party also claimed that due to the fear of losing the general election, the government has deployed soldiers who are in the guise of workers of Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) to the rural areas. In a statement, party spokesperson Obert Gutu said:
No rocket science is needed to ascertain that Zanu PF is smelling a humiliating and crushing electoral defeat in this year’s harmonized elections and as such, the Mnangagwa administration is literally clutching at straws; desperately trying to unfairly tilt the electoral playing field in its favour
The people’s vote is secret and indeed, the illegal practice of forcibly recording the serial numbers of voters’ registration slips should be resisted by all lawful means necessary.
We are aware that soldiers in civilian attire have been deployed to all rural districts of Zimbabwe to campaign for the deeply unpopular and incorrigibly factionalized Zanu PF party. These soldiers are also embarking on clandestine operations meant to hoodwink the local people into believing that they are innocent members of non – governmental organisations who have been sent to drill boreholes in certain rural districts such as Nkayi South and Nkayi North.
Traditional leaders are also being abused to make them operate as de-facto Zanu PF political commissars in their respective areas of jurisdiction. The MDC has always respected traditional leaders and we have always held them in very high esteem. We would like to call upon Zanu PF to leave our traditional leaders alone so that they can continue to peacefully carry out their duties as the custodians of our cultural traditions and values,