Rita Makarau must stick to one job

Rita Makarau

Rita Makarau is the ZEC chairperson. She is also a judge of the Supreme Court of Zimbabwe. In addition, she is also the secretary of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC).

Effectively, she is simultaneously holding onto three very demanding and challenging jobs. Obviously, this untenable state of affairs flies in the face of well–established principles of good corporate governance that are meant to avoid conflict of interest, amongst other things.

Put bluntly, it isn’t a healthy state of affairs to have one individual holding onto these three very important and demanding jobs at the same time. Surely, Zimbabwe doesn’t suffer from any chronic shortage of suitably qualified and experienced people to take up some of the jobs that Rita Makarau is holding onto.

In almost all the other SADC countries, the position of chairperson of an electoral management body is invariably a full–time vocation. This is mainly so because the job is a very busy and demanding assignment that cannot be effectively shared by an individual who is holding onto other jobs.

The MDC is deeply concerned by this anomalous state of affairs whereby Rita Makarau occupies three crucial jobs at the same time. Particularly as we move towards the holding of elections in 2018, it would be more appropriate for Rita Makarau to make a choice of which particular job she would like to keep. She cannot keep on blowing hot and cold; approbating and reprobating.

We are not even sure whether or not Rita Makarau is actually being separately paid for all the three jobs that she is currently holding onto. Should this be the case, then this would certainly be a scandal of monumental proportions. As it is, ZEC is seriously lagging behind with the process of procuring adequate BVR kits to operationalize the BVR exercise.

It is not unreasonable for us to suspect that may be Rita Makarau is overwhelmed by the challenges of the three jobs that she is currently performing. The MDC, therefore, is calling for the immediate assignment of Rita Makarau to only one job at a time. This will bode well for the holding of well–prepared, transparent, free and fair elections next year.

President Robert Mugabe has gazetted that voter registration is kicking off on September 14, 2017 until January 15, 2018. ZEC has not come out very clear to advise and clarify to the nation whether they would be able to complete the BVR exercise in this space of time as gazetted by Mugabe.

There is a lot of vagueness surrounding the issue of whether ZEC, as the constitutional body mandated with the responsibility of running elections in Zimbabwe, is actually ready for this exercise. Mugabe and the Zanu PF regime that he fronts are not worthy of the people’s trust.

Previous elections in Zimbabwe have been routinely rigged in favour of Zanu PF and as such, we would like to ascertain whether or not ZEC is adequately capacitated and ready to roll out the BVR exercise countrywide. The toiling masses of Zimbabwe are sick and tired of being taken for granted. Once beaten twice shy.

Credible, free and fair elections are essential in extricating Zimbabwe from the prevailing political meltdown and socio – economic stagnation and retrogression. The consequences of holding unfree and unfair elections next year are just too ghastly to contemplate.

MDC: Equal Opportunities for All
Obert Chaurura Gutu
MDC National Spokesperson

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Zanu PF dictatorship should be sent packing in 2018

Mugabe and cronies must go

The people of Zimbabwe have endured almost four decades of political repression and acute socio–economic decline and deprivation at the hands of the Robert Mugabe – fronted Zanu PF dictatorship.

From being the bread – basket of Southern Africa just a few years ago, Zimbabwe has degenerated into a basket case; a banana republic that doesn’t have its own national currency and a country where more than 90% of the population survive on less than US$1 per day. Such has been the tragic and depressing story of Zimbabwe under the tutelage of one of the world’s most intolerant and oppressive dictators, Robert Mugabe.

The MDC Alliance offers the down–trodden masses of Zimbabwe a rare opportunity to finally put the Zanu PF dictatorship to rest in the 2018 harmonised elections. Granted, negotiations for a final opposition coalition are still on - going but we should seize this opportunity to give the brutal, insipidly and rabidly corrupt Zanu PF regime the sucker punch in next year’s elections.

It is horrendous to even imagine another five years under the Zanu PF regime after next year’s elections. We have to coalesce and find each other as we seek to liberate the toiling masses of our motherland. Surely, we cannot have a situation in which millions of people are not able to access their hard – earned money from the banks. A situation in which millions of Zimbabweans have to escape to neighbouring countries such as South Africa, Botswana and Namibia as desperate economic refugees. No! Zimbabwe is just too rich to be this poor!

The main contest in next year’s elections is between good and evil. It is a choice between enhanced political repression and socio– economic trepidation as represented by Zanu PF and a refreshing new trajectory of political freedom and socio–economic regeneration and progress as represented by the MDC Alliance.

Going forward, the MDC Alliance should strenuously fight for electoral reforms because we know that Zanu PF is extremely reluctant to reform itself out of power. The battle for electoral reforms should now be the rallying and clarion call for the MDC Alliance. We are confronting a vapid, rabid and vacuous Zanu PF dictatorship that is prepared to break the bank in order to retain political power.

It is not going to be a stroll in the park but nevertheless, we can overcome and overthrow this dictatorship in the ballot box if we play our cards carefully and skillfully. Actually, there should be a virtual zero margin of error on the part of the MDC Alliance. It is like a hunter who is faced with a single bullet to liquidate a lethal animal. We simply can’t afford the luxury of wasting this single bullet that is left.

We should now put all our ducks in a row. This is the time for us to look beyond our petty personal differences and egos and look at the bigger picture. The people of Zimbabwe are looking to the MDC Alliance for their salvation. Let us now close ranks and give the enemy no room to take advantage of our differences. We can rest be assured that the enemy is not sleeping. The enemy is lurking in the dark; ready to pounce at any cracks that might surface within the opposition ranks. Remember, the last kick of a dying horse is almost invariably fatal!

We have now entered the homestretch. We are stronger together. United we stand and divided we fall. History will judge us very harshly if we miss this final opportunity to send the Zanu PF regime to the cleaners.

MDC: Equal Opportunities for All Obert Chaurura Gutu
MDC National Spokesperson

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