By Professor Matodzi
Harare, August 3, 2013 – MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai on Saturday declared that he won the harmonized elections even though they were illegitimate setting himself on a collision course with Zanu PF leader Robert Mugabe, who was declared winner of the disputed polls by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC).
On Saturday, ZEC announced Mugabe, who has ruled Zimbabwe since independence in 1980, won the presidential poll with 61 percent of the vote while Tsvangirai got 33 percent of the vote in an election in which 3.48 million people casted their votes out of over 8 million ballot papers printed by the elections management body.
Tsvangirai told journalists on Saturday at a press briefing convened at his Harare residence just before ZEC had announced the results that his MDC-T party’s national council had resolved after meeting earlier in the capital to reject the 31 July elections because they were held through a flawed process and in the absence of democratic reforms.
The MDC-T leader said even though the elections were flawed his party has available evidence showing that his party actually won the polls, which the African Union and the SADC Council of Non-Governmental Organisations and local civic society groups faulted as lacking credibility.
“From the evidence available, discounting all omissions and commissions the MDC won that election,” Tsvangirai said in a statement.
Tsvangirai, who read out the statement while flanked by his party’s top leadership including deputy party leader President Thokozani Khupe and party secretary-general Tendai Biti.
The former trade union leader said his party would soon approach the African Union and the Southern African Development Community to investigate irregularities noted during the election which he has already declared a “farce”.
“The fraudulent and stolen election has plunged Zimbabwe into a constitutional, political and economic crisis. In this regard, the MDC expects that the SADC and AU shall meet urgently to deal with this crisis in order to restore constitutional, political and legal legitimacy in the country. The MDC calls for a forensic audit of the electoral process in particular the voters roll, the ballot papers and where they were printed, the special vote, voter displacement, voter registration certificates. Further, the MDC national council resolved that the SADC Organ Troika must investigate the role of the security sector and the militarization of the election,” said Tsvangirai.
Tsvangirai said his MDC-T will not consider participating in a coalition government with Mugabe this time and will not legitimise government institutions resulting from the election by taking part in them.
He said the MDC-T will exhaust all legal remedies to challenge the election result including exploring peaceful, political, constitutional and diplomatic remedies to resolve the current crisis.
Tsvangirai said his party’s national council resolved that once all remedies have been exhausted, the Zimbabweans should be allowed a fresh opportunity to freely and fairly elect a government of their choice.
“In this regard, a credible, free, fair and legitimate election must be held as soon as possible,” he said.