THE ruling Zanu PF party yesterday disclosed that it blocked its candidates who lost in the July 30, 2018 harmonised elections from challenging the election results in court because that would have discredited the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) and inadvertently cast aspersions over President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s victory.
This was disclosed by Zanu PF legal affairs secretary Munyaradzi Paul Mangwana at a national multi-stakeholder post-election review conference in Nyanga.
“In my capacity as secretary for legal affairs, I faced this challenge from Zanu PF candidates who had not succeeded in the last elections. They came forward to me and said we want to challenge the result of the election because we feel that Zec did not do its work very well,” he said.
Mangwana added: “If you were in my position, what would you do? Your party has won the election and has vigorously defended its victory in the Constitutional Court, but your (parliamentary and local government) candidates are coming to you, saying Zec did not do its work well, if they had done it well, I would have won the election.
“Any new process still requires to be reviewed with an intention of improving it to perfection if possible. I cannot stand before you to say the electoral process was perfect, but it was good for it to present a credible outcome. There are areas which do require improvement starting with the BVR (biometric voter registration) process itself,” he said.
Zanu PF always backed Zec ahead of elections and in most instances did not even send representatives to the multi-party organised meetings by the electoral management body to iron out teething problems ahead of the polls.
The opposition has often accused Zec of playing mother to the ruling party and favouring it with information and internal secrets pertaining to its running of the polls, allegations denied by both Zanu PF and Zec.
Mangwana, however, claimed that there was an abuse of commissioned affidavits by political parties, leading to voters being registered in wards they did not reside.
Zanu PF said it wanted this problem to be solved by allowing political parties access to the voters’ roll three months ahead of polls to iron out challenges pertaining to voter egistration.
“You would find sometimes 70 people registered as staying in one room … through the relaxation of rules there was abuse, I am not saying by which political party, but political parties because they want to win at all costs can abuse relaxation of rules and that is what gave rise to the situation whereby people were simply getting pre-made affidavits by political agents,” Mangwana said.