The latest MDC demands come in the wake of revelations by independent election watchdog, the Zimbabwe Election Support Network (ZESN) that the voters’ roll is full of dead people and includes names of children some as young as four years.
This has boosted President Mugabe,s critics and human rights groups who have always accused the former ruling party, Zanu (PF) of rigging elections since 1980 when the country attained independence from Britain.
In the wake of the report, the MDC has come out with guns blazing attacking the registrar general Tobaiwa Mudede and accusing him of manipulating the voters’ roll.
“The MDC’s position on the need for a new, clean, biometric digital voters’ roll has been vindicated following shocking findings from the latest national survey conducted by (ZESN) exposing the weakness of the current voters’ roll.
“The findings confirm why elections in Zimbabwe have always been contested as illegitimate, and thus failing to record a true reflection of the democratic will of the people.
“The MDC is dismayed that for 29 years Tobaiwa Mudede has abused the dead, who are supposed to be resting in peace, to rig and manipulate election results. In the case of the 2008 election, there were more babies and the aged than legitimate voters on the voters’ roll.
“It is therefore self-evident that the shambolic state of the voters’ roll has been used by the unpopular Zanu (PF) to engineer election results. Zanu (PF) has literally disallowed the people of Zimbabwe an opportunity to express their democratic right,” said the MDC in a statement yesterday.
Tsvangirai’s party said an imperfect voters’ roll will disenfranchise the eligible electorate and allow disqualified voters to mark their ballot.
“International laws, which Zimbabwe is a signatory to, necessitate the registration of all eligible citizens as voters but in Zimbabwe, the detested Zanu (PF) has ensured that thousands of people fail to do so as the voter registration exercise is partisan, non-transparent, biased and prejudiced.
“Going forward, in order for this country to hold any free, fair and credible election there is need for an impartial, professional and independent board, contracted to come up with a fresh, biometric digitalised voter’s roll, as is the trend in civilised countries. As the MDC, we call for a comprehensive, accurate and credible voters’ roll as a prerequisite for the coming elections and any other election to be held,” read part of the statement. – Radio VOP