By Professor Matodzi
Harare, August 9, 2013 – Aggrieved Movement for Democratic Change (MDC-T) leader Morgan Tsvangirai on Friday challenged the election results in the country’s highest court, the Constitutional Court demanding a fresh election within two months.
Tsvangirai filed an election petition in the Constitutional Court late Friday seeking an order to declare the July 31 harmonised elections invalid and to have them set aside.
The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) last Saturday declared Mugabe as the winner with 61 percent of the vote while the former trade union leader garnered 33 percent.
Tsvangirai, who attached a dossier to his election petition containing several election irregularities said he wanted the declaration by ZEC that Mugabe had won the election to be set aside and that a fresh election be convened within 60 days of the granting of the court order.
In the dossier, the MDC-T leader exposed controversial Israeli firm, Nikuv Projects International which has been fingered for rigging the election results in favour of Zanu PF and which has been working together with the Registrar of Voters which is under the control of ZEC for manipulating the country’s roll of registered voters.
Although ZEC denied the involvement of the Israeli firm in a letter to the MDC-T, the veteran former labour leader tabled payments totaling $10 million made to Nikuv since February this year and insisted that the company had been operating in the country since the 1990’s.
“What is worrying is the involvement of an Israeli firm, Nikuv Projects International, an Israeli firm, in the development, management and manipulation of the voters’ roll….We present in the table below payments that were done by the Registrar General’s Officer to Nikuv between February and July 2013,” reads part of the 20 page dossier, made available to radio VOP.
On Thursday, Tsvangirai filed an urgent chamber application in the Electoral Court demanding unlimited access to all the presidential election materials used in the harmonised elections held on July 31. The application will be heard on Wednesday.
The MDC-T leader wants to be furnished with the full set of presidential results per constituency, copies of the voters’ roll used in all the polling stations including the one used in the special voting process held in mid-July. He also wants a register of police officers who managed to cast their vote in the special voting process and of those who had been authorized to but did not manage to cast their special vote and the reasons for such failure.
The combative former trade union leader, who is largely credited with stemming the decade long agonising economic crisis authored by Mugabe’s Zanu PF party has demanded that the electoral authorities hand over to him registers of assisted voters at all polling stations where people cast their votes during the elections.
He also wants access to a register of people whose names did not appear in the voters’ roll but were allowed to vote using voter registration slips.
Tsvangirai’s legal challenge is likely to open a pandora’s box after some local civil society organisations, African governments and western powers criticised the elections as “flawed” and whose result was tainted by “substantial electoral irregularities”.
In rejecting the election results, Tsvangirai said they were a “farce, fraudulent and stolen.”