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Explosive Zanu PF PB meeting on the cards as rigging mars internal polls

AN explosive Zanu PF politburo meeting is on the cards as warring members of the party want to express their anger over the just ended internal elections that were marred by allegations of rigging and have left the ruling party divided ahead of the forthcoming 2023 general elections.

The PB meeting scheduled to take place tomorrow (Wednesday) comes at a time when petitions have been presented to President Emmerson Mnangagwa amid reports of poll manipulation in Masvingo, Mashonaland Central, Manicaland and Mashonaland East provinces.

The manipulation which took place has also been viewed by political commentators as a way of perfecting the rigging template for predetermined victory in the next critical general elections.

Insiders told Zim Morning Post that petitions have been handed to the Zanu PF leader and president Emmerson Mnangagwa who will chair the expected explosive PB meeting tomorrow.

“We met and decided to hand our petition to the highest office,” said a highly placed source from Masvingo province on Sunday.

“Our investigations revealed that people did not vote in Gutu. It is not possible to have all 120 members voting in 66 districts. We are aware of some members who did not turn up but the returning officers have voted ballots. The results show that out of 70 districts in Gutu 66 voted for Mavhenyenge ahead of the incumbent and Masvingo Provincial Affairs minister Ezra Chadzamira,” the source said.

“Does it mean all members of the electorate were present when voting was done? Mavhenyenge had 120 votes in 66 districts while Chadzamira failed to get even a single one except in in the four districts.”

The source said when investigations were conducted it became clear that voters did not actually meet but those tasked to conduct the voting process returned with voted ballots.

“The returning officers had voted ballots but there were no actual voters on the ground in Gutu,” said the source.

As tension grows disgruntled Zanu PF members are reportedly mobilising people to come register their anger at the Headquarters as the PB meets.

Sources in Zanu PF have told this publication a storm is brewing on Wednesday as the party is expected to announce the results of the plebiscite which took place around the country.

“Some of the members who lost last week have mobilized grassroot members to come and vent their frustration to the Politburo, the members believe that they were rigged and a re- run should be held in a transparent manner,” a source told Zim Morning Post.

Political commentators said the alleged rigging which took place in the just held Zanu PF elections should not be taken lightly as this can be a true reflection of what awaits the nation in the forthcoming by elections and the 2023 harmonised elections.

Political analyst Kudakwashe Munemo believes that this is politics at play where Zanu PF is trying to test its rigging machinery as we go for the harmonised elections in 2023.

“The massive rigging reported during the conduct of Zanu PF’s elections to elect the Provincial Chairpersons reflects badly on their internal democracy as a political party and mirrors the party’s accepted behaviour in the general elections.

“The behaviour must not be viewed in isolation from what is likely to be the scenario in the scheduled by-elections and the 2023 harmonised elections as the party seems to be on an overdrive to attain political power at all costs, including covert and overt violence.

“What is most important, however, is for citizens to to expose such rigging practices and tendencies and be proactive in deploying strategies to circumvent and/or confront them,” Munemo told Zim Morning Post

MDC Alliance Youth Assembly chairperson Obey Sithole said Zanu PF is a party which believes in rigging and violence and this should be stopped

“Rigging has always been Zanu PF’s culture and they have adopted it religiously as their only tool for survival. Thus, rigging is ought to be expected from them.

“However, the good news is that we are now aware of their tactics and we are ready to be more tactical than them to handle their machinations and annihilate their efforts in that regard. We are cognizant of the fact that rigging, even when it is to happen, it has a ceiling. This is why we are making frantic efforts to mobilize people to register as voters to ensure a high turnout to curb any attempts of rigging. We will put strict measures in place to ensure that the vote is protected and the people’s will respected,” Sithole said

Another Political analyst Samuel Wadzai said that election processes should be held in a peaceful manner. “We are worried as citizens, of course we did not expect anything exemplary from the ruling party I think history has shown us that whenever they engage in internal election processes they are marred by violence and allegations of manipulation.”

“So we did not expect anything exemplary from that process but what is worrying is that this is happening when the country is moving towards a harmonised election in 2023 so there is a genuine worry from the citizens that what happened last week might manifest in the next election so we call upon the ruling party and its members that they conduct their businesses in a peaceful manner so that we do not see the country plunged into chaos, we want our electoral process to be done in a transparent and democratic manner,” Wadzai said.

Zimbabwe is exepected to go for harmonised elections in 2023 and  by elections are expected early this year.

Previously Zanu PF has been accused of rigging and using violence to win elections.