Jonathan Moyo Speaks On Allegations That Zanu-PF Rigs Elections, Offers Advice To Opposition

Exiled former cabinet minister Professor Jonathan Moyo has described his former party, Zanu-PF, as being clueless about elections. He described the rigging narrative as being complex and advised the opposition to have “technical, legal and political experts who understand the design and operation of the voting system” to minimise rigging in the upcoming 2018 elections. Speaking to The Standard, Moyo said,

As a political party, Zanu PF has always been clueless about elections but has always benefited from the power of incumbency through government officials and the security apparatus that is run and controlled by securocrats.

But the point is I never ever participated in any general election in Zimbabwe as a government official. Not even once. …Whereas I won my first two elections in 2005 and 2008 as an opposition candidate, I lost in 2013 as a Zanu PF candidate. I’m at a loss as to how you expect me to know anything about what you say is the rigging and manipulation that was done when I lost an election whose alleged rigging was supposed to benefit me.

It’s public knowledge that I unsuccessfully challenged all the way up to the Supreme Court the 2013 election result in Tsholotsho North on grounds that the election had been rigged against me in favour of the MDC-T candidate. So, the election rigging narrative is complex and cuts both ways. The lessons I’ve drawn are that opposition political parties should be careful about self-defeating rigging narratives, which create the false impression that the ruling party has a foolproof rigging capacity.

The bottom line is that first, opposition parties must ensure they have technical, legal and political experts who understand the design and operation of the voting system from start to finish and who can identify and challenge anomalies. Second, opposition parties must field candidates at least in all the 1 958 wards for local elections and all the 210 constituencies. Not having these candidates allows Zanu PF to stuff ballots and increase its provincial totals to influence proportional representation seats.

Third, opposition parties and independent candidates must, well ahead of the election, identify and train capable election agents and deploy a sufficient number of at least four such agents in each of the polling stations in the constituencies they are contesting and for political parties the requirement is to have four polling agents in at least 9 760 polling stations (based on the 2013 poll) across the country.

The absence of polling agents or the fielding of incompetent, fearful or manipulatable ones creates huge room for rigging elections, especially when it comes to under or over-counting of votes at polling stations or collation centres.

More: Read The Full Interview In The Standard

Supreme CourtJonathan Moyo

The Supreme Court of Zimbabwe is the highest court in all matters in Zimbabwe, which are not constitutional in nature. It is the court of last resort and the highest court of appeal in Zimbabwe. Its operations are governed by the Constitution and the Supreme... Read More About Supreme Court

Jonathan Moyo is a Zimbabwean politician and former member of the ZANU-PF party where he was a member of the party's Politiburo. He is also the former minister of Higher and Tertiary Education. Moyo was expelled from Parliament as the (Tsholotsho North) Legislator in November... Read More About Jonathan Moyo

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6 comments

  1. silungsani ndlovu Reply

    What advise from a desperate Jonso….no plans from NOW…..A Loafer with an advise …this is longing to be back home in Zimbabwe….Jonso your friend The Late Masiphula Sithole died a prominent Columnist ….i believe you following on his foot steps….

    • Jinda Mutasa Reply

      Contradictions abound in Jonathan Moyo’s story, First , if Zanu(PF) are rigging elections they do so TO WIN ie for their candidates to triumph, right? As an an independent candidate ( in opposition to Zanu(PF) candidate) , Moyo wins Tsholotsho seat in 2005 and 2008. As a Zanu(PF) candidate in 2013 he LOSES Tsholotsho election to the opposition MDC(T) candidate – If Zanu(PF) are rigging the elections, certainly not in Tsholotsho!! Bad example. A more contradictory statement I have never seen!!

  2. mudhara Reply

    sometimes we should try to understand the content kwete kungoti nekuti zvabva kuna jonso therefor its rubbish. read again and you will understand. especially the bit about the elections he won and the one he lost

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