Speaking to journalists in Harare recently, National Electoral Reforms Agenda (NERA) Youths said the ruling party should stop‘stealing’ elections and prepare themselves for massive demos.
NERA Youth Forum Chairperson, Tawanda Kalonga, said Zanu PF has been rigging elections but that will not happen this time around.
“We strongly warn Zanu PF to stop forthwith its intentions of stealing the 2018 elections by interfering with the BVR (Biometric Voter Registration) procurement and deployment.
“You have stolen elections before but not now, not ever. We challenge ZEC (Zimbabwe Electoral Commission) and Rita Makarau to urgently implement electoral reforms,” he said.
“The electoral system in Zimbabwe has become a mechanism of legitimizing Zanu PF’s continued reign.
“The voice and will of the people remain far from being respected. Elections are rigged, violence is used, the electoral commission (ZEC) has proven to be an extension of Zanu PF, armed forces interfere with elections and there is no action what-so-ever from the responsible authorities, the judiciary is used to undermine political rights,” said Kalonga who is also a member of Transform Zimbabwe.
From the youths’ sentiments, demonstrations are looming right across the country and will be also targeting rural youths which have been for long Zanu PF’s stronghold.
People’s Democratic Party (PDP)’s Elvis Mugari, speaking during the same forum, said they want to force President Mugabe out of office before the 2018 elections.
“Robert Mugabe is now fragile; he is now a liability to the state of Zimbabwe. As much as we are pushing for electoral reforms on the other side, we want to push Mugabe out before 2018,” he said.
“I personally believe in civil disobedience and massive resistance. Let’s flood the streets. Like what happened in Tunisia and Egypt? Let’s do that as young people in Zimbabwe.
“It is our responsibility as the young people to do so. Remaining silent will be doing a disservice to the next generation.”
Mugari also went on to say Zanu Pf will never reform itself out of power hence they intend to take a more radical approach through organising themselves as NERA Youths to take to the streets, targeting rural communities as well.
Despite having no power to block President Mugabe’s candidature in the upcoming elections, as he has been already endorsed by provinces as the ruling party’s candidate, Denford Ngadziore from the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC-T) says they will not allow him to stand in the election.
“We are not going to allow a 93 year old person to run as a candidate; that we are going to bet.
“Ahead of this process (BVR) we are going to set up a lot of parallel programmes.
“We are going to meet very soon to plan for a NERA youth demonstration and it will not be dictated by the police as they have been doing,” he said.
Meanwhile, MDC T Youth Assemble National Spokesperson Brian Dube in a separate independence message said the liberation movement of the country remains unfinished and the duty of youths to finish it off.
“The Zimbabwe liberation movement remains unfinished as those in power have concentrated on narrow vision and have betrayed the national vision.
“It is our generational mandate to complete this movement and establish for ourselves the Zimbabwe we want,” he said.
Source: The Zimbabwean