By Staff Reporter
Opposition Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) has raised concerns over alleged interference and bias by the government in the upcoming elections
Speaking at a press conference in Harare today, party spokesperson Fadzayi Mahere criticized the Football Association of Zimbabwe (FAZ), and the Heritage Trust, accusing them of being “shoddy institutions” used by President Mnangagwa’s administration.
Mahere questioned the legitimacy of these organizations, questioning their mandate and origin.
She expressed concerns about their involvement in the profiling and intimidation of voters, as well as their alleged role in coercing citizens to vote in favor of the ruling Zanu PF party during primary elections.
“We then have a problem of FAZ and the Heritage Trust, these shoddy institutions that are being used by Mr. Mnangagwa. The Constitution provides for the Central Intelligence Organisation, who are these shoddy organisations, what is their mandate, where did they come from. What job are they performing? We don’t want any intimidation of voters, we don’t want them to profile people. We saw them frog marching sometimes citizens to go and vote in Zanu PF primaries.
“We have continuously said that we take issue with the interference of FAZ and the Heritage Trust with the general rights of citizens, they cannot be allowed to intimidate and harass citizens. This election should be free and fair. Everybody’s vote is secret, so we don’t want them coming in to frog march people,” Mahere said
She further alleged that Zanu PF had access to the voters’ roll, pointing to the prevalence of WhatsApp and SMS messages sent to citizens, seemingly from President Mnangagwa himself, inviting them to join Zanu PF’s WhatsApp groups.
She questioned how the ruling party obtained citizens’ phone numbers, which are not publicly disclosed in the voters’ roll.
“The question that we ask ZEC is how did Zanu PF get each citizen’s phone number? That information is in ZEC’s database. Does Zanu PF have access to that database?” Mahere demanded, referring to the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC). “That’s the question that we are asking in terms of the law.”
Mahere also criticized the unequal treatment of political parties regarding access to the voters’ roll.
She argued that ZEC should not hand over the voters’ roll exclusively to one party, raising concerns about the potential abuse of private data for political purposes.
“We continue to demand ZEC that this election should not only be free and fair but should also be credible. You cannot hand one party the voters’ roll and deny it to another,” she asserted. “ZEC has a constitutional obligation to be independent and non-partisan; they cannot take Zanu PF’s side.”
In addition, Mahere called out Zanu PF for allegedly exploiting traditional leaders, who are prohibited by law from engaging in partisan politics.