Mayhem as Zanu PF election candidates flee with ballots amid massive rigging
By Léopold Munhende
VIOLENCE in parts of West Mashonaland and allegations of rigging in the country’s 10 provinces characterized Zanu PF’s provincial elections held on Tuesday, with some candidates accused of fleeing with ballots.
Delayed delivery of ballot papers to polling stations was reported in most parts of the country, with some members saying the move was deliberately used to frustrate supporters of rivals.
The old women spent most of the day in shadows where there were shadows, waiting for a chance to choose their provincial president, women’s league president and youth league leader.
In Masvingo, the vote, which was scheduled to take place between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m., didn’t start until around 4 p.m. and was due to continue until late last night.
In Bulawayo, confusion over whether people should receive two or four ballots led a polling officer to suggest that the challenges would all be resolved by the Politburo, with potential reorganization if needed.
“Let’s accept that after the outcome the final decision will come from the Politburo based on the difference, if it means a replay, so be it,” the visibly irritated agent said in a conversation with the president. and candidate of Bulawayo Ward 15 and candidate Benard Nhata.
Some candidates further questioned why only 45 ballots were delivered to their polling stations when 120 people were supposed to vote.
In Highfield, Harare, some Zanu PF members might complain about assisted voters and those helping them, with more questions as to whether those helping were doing what they were told.
Mashonaland West has experienced scenes of violence as the names of some candidates could not be found on any ballot papers.
What was ensured was chaotic, as members pushed, dragged and punched each other in anger and frustration.
Mashonaland Central has seen its usual cases of allegations of electoral fraud against incumbent President Kazembe Kazembe, whose agents allegedly tried to escape with ballots in Muzarabani.
Preliminary results there show his fierce rival Tafadzwa Musarara leading the way.
The vote was also delayed for unexplained reasons.
The run-up to D-Day had seen numerous cases of violence and vote-buying, with President Emmerson Mnangagwa forced to suspend his campaign in November as the situation became too tense to be discovered.
Mnangagwa and his deputy Constantino Chiwenga clashed at Mashonaland West, Mashonaland Central and Harare, where fighting between Zanu PF factions was taking place in broad daylight.