Elections: Lies and exaggerations in overdrive


FOR regime change agents, no story alleging ZANU PF brutality is too farfetched to be rejected.
The more brutal the better.
This week, notorious regime change agent Dewa Mavhinga, who masquerades as a human rights activist based in South Africa, doctored a video on alleged threats of violence by ZANU PF supporters and dished it out on social media as fact.
Mavhinga posted the blurred video on his twitter handle, which is evidently targeted at election observer missions in the country.
The faint and very much old video was accompanied by a twitter caption: “video evidence of #Zanu-PF intimidation to unleash soldiers ahead of 2018 elections — in Mt Darwin.”
However, alert Zimbabweans immediately picked the fiction.
The private media, on the other hand, has not been left out in the lies and exaggerations overdrive.
This week, the NewsDay published a story titled ‘Campaign trail turns bloody…as rivals’ two-year child is abducted, killed’ in which ZANU PF is fingered in the death of a two-year-old after his father Rambai Lumbe defected to the Joice Mujuru-led National People’s Party (NPP).
Lumbe defected from ZANU PF in 2014 to join ZimPF and later NPP.
The mother of the child said her son died under unclear circumstances, but suspects a political hand.
It is alleged the boy’s body was recovered about two kilometres from the family home on Sunday after he went missing Saturday afternoon. This is not the first time such stories have been published as the country gears for elections.
Remember the 2013 Headlands inferno?
Christpowers Maisiri, a 12-year-old boy, died in an inferno on February 23 2013 after the house in which he was sleeping in together with his brothers caught fire and ZANU PF was alleged to have been responsible.
The Patriot exclusively revealed that Sherperd Maisiri, little known MDC-T member, had used his mentally disturbed son’s death to gain political and financial mileage.
Following the death of Christpowers, Maisiri received a brand new bicycle from MDC- T stalwart Eddie Cross to replace the one that had been burnt in the inferno. He was also given an undisclosed amount of cash by the MDC-T that other villagers referred to as ‘mathousands’.
The same villagers told The Patriot, that they suspected the father to have started the fire.
In a few days, he had become one of the richest villagers in the area.
On July 6 2008 The New York Times carried an article titled “Mugabe thugs shout ‘Lets kill the baby’.”
The story was repeated by Newsweek, a US magazine.
It alleged ZANU PF supporters broke both legs of an 11-month-old baby to punish his father for being an opposition councillor.
The baby’s name was given as Blessing Mabhena, who, allegedly, was grabbed from the bed and flung down with force as his mother, Agnes, hid under the bed.
The story was reportedly created by a freelance journalist in Harare, Douglas Merle, and was inserted in The New York Times by Christina Lamb.
The New York Times was forced to run a lengthy correction on July 9 2008 after learning the boy’s mother had lied to get money to pay for an operation to correct the child’s bowed legs (rickets).
Doubts about the mother’s account arose when an orthopedic surgeon said an X-ray of the child’s legs showed no sign of fractures.
This wasn’t the only time a story had been fabricated to discredit ZANU PF.
On April 28 2002, Daily News reporters Lloyd Mudiwa and Collin Chiwanza fabricated a story that a 53-year-old supporter of the MDC, Brandina Tadyanemhandu of Magunje, was decapitated by ZANU PF youths in full view of her two young daughters.
International news agencies and newspapers outside Zimbabwe published the story, quoting the Daily News.
It turned out her husband had cooked up the story in an attempt to get money for her funeral from MDC.
The Zimbabwe Independent, on February 6 2002, published a story titled ‘My ordeal as Mugabe Prisoner’ by their reporter Basildon Peta.
In the story, Peta claimed security agents had wrongfully jailed and detained him in a blocked toilet for a cell.
The story was published in many Western newspapers before it was discovered that Peta had never been arrested.
For the lies, Peta was ‘dismissed’ from The Independent and skipped the country into South Africa where he lied again about being hounded out of Zimbabwe.
As a reward, Peta got a job with Britain’s The Independent.
George Soros’s pet
Just like Basildon Peta, Human Rights Watch (HRW)’s Mavhinga has sold his soul without batting an eyelash.
Mavhinga earns a living through cheap lies, sensationalising events so he can paint a picture of doom for donor attraction.
If crisis does not come by, he creates one; like the way he doctored the video on violence.
Upon discovery that the video was fake, Mavhinga was slammed by many who advised him to look for other avenues of making money than manufacture lies in broad daylight.
Given his democratic pretensions, and what he has been doing lately, Mavhinga shows a desperation that borders on criminality.
Mavhinga has been funding the campaign of an MDC-Alliance Member of National Assembly candidate, Job Sikhala.
Sikhala is vying for the Zengeza West seat on an MDC-Alliance ticket.
Sikhala broke the news over the weekend on his facebook page when he was paying due recognition to people who had supported his election campaign financially.
“This could not have been possible had it not been of unprecedented and overwhelming financial support I obtained from good and solid friends across the world who teared when they heard about my intention to stand in Zengeza West,” wrote Sikhala.
“Tafadzwa Musekiwa and his wife Tariro made the most contribution to this success.
I wonder whether they spared any money for their food as they contributed almost half of the £30 000 I got from my genuine friends.
My sibling Harry Sikhala, Memory Mucherahowa Mwendamberi, Nathaniel Mphisa, Brian Musekiwa, Charles Mutama, Arthur KD, Mirirai Bere, Thomas Maseko, Nqobile Ndlovu, Dewa Mavhinga, Moses Oburu and many others.”
In December 2017, Mavhinga travelled to the US with MDC-T leader Nelson Chamisa and Tendai Biti, where they begged Americans to maintain sanctions on Zimbabwe.
From his days at Crisis International and to his days now at HRW, Mavhinga remains a quisling.
He is a recipient of the British Chevening and Canon Collins Trust scholarships.
As a star witness at the US Senate’s December 12 2017 witch-hunt hearing titled ‘Zimbabwe After the Military Takeover: Prospects for Credible Elections and Human Rights Reforms’, Mavhinga alleged the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission’s (ZEC) secretariat was being dominated by partisan state intelligence and military officials.
It is at this hearing Mavhinga called for the US to maintain illegal sanctions on Zimbabwe.
He urged Americans to stay away from funding anything in Zimbabwe until ‘the country holds free, fair and credible elections.’
Six years ago, Mavhinga testified in Washington, US, when he was regional co-ordinator for the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition (CiZC) at a hearing titled ‘Beyond the reign of Zimbabwe’s Mugabe: A Chance for Democracy or Prelude to Conflict’.
Mavhinga also co-founded the Zimbabwe Democracy Institute (ZDI), which on paper is called a ‘public policy think tank’ based in Harare.
Both CiZC and ZDI are financed by the fraudulent white liberal and closet white supremacist billionaire George Soros.
Soros is an American billionaire who has become notorious for funding regime change agenda in Africa and other parts of the world.
In Africa, for the purpose of regime change and the promotion of Western values, Soros owns the Soros Open Society Institute (SOSI), which runs at least four regional operations namely Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa (OSISA), the Open Society Institute for West Africa (OSIWA), Open Society Institute for East Africa (OSIEA) and the Open Society Foundation-South Africa (OSF-SA)
Mavhinga is a member of OSISA.
Apart from funding NGOs to promote regime change in Zimbabwe, Soros has also been funding the MDC-T.
For example, in April 2007, the Open Society Initiative sponsored an MDC delegation led by the late MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai to Washington, DC.
The delegation included Grace Kwinjeh, Lovemore Madhuku, Otto Saki and Akwe Amous.
OSISA also funded Dr Douglas Gwatidzo of Doctors for Human Rights to fly to the US to give an eyewitness account of the events of March 11 2007 to Congress.
On March 11 2007, some MDC officials clashed with the police in a move well-calculated to portray MDC officials as innocent victims of an oppressive system.
The violence was timed to influence the March 23 2007 US Congress meeting on Zimbabwe.
It is at the US Congress meeting where Dr Gwatidzo, the same doctor who treated Tsvangirai, Chamisa and other MDC officials, gave an exaggerated medical report on the extent of the injuries.
In his accounts, Dr Gwatidzo admitted to having been warned in advance to prepare to receive and treat injured people prior to the violence.
Rigging elections mirage
ZANU PF’s alleged rigging or manipulations of elections is based on negative assessments by NGOs on the payrolls of the US Government.
Stephen Gowan, Canadian writer and political activist based in Ottawa, Canada, said in the Western world, it has been an article of faith that ZANU PF rigs elections.
“Because the media have repeated the mantra so often, its truth is accepted as a given. This popular misconception is so firmly ensconced in the public mind,” notes Gowan.
“Election legitimacy, then, is defined in terms of outcomes, not process.”
Mavhinga and his colleague Tawanda Chimhini’s idea of credibility is winner-specific.
Last week, Mavhinga said the Zimbabwe Government’s failure to carry out legal and electoral reforms threatens the credibility of the country’s general elections next month.
Human Rights Watch said its research in May found security forces involved in the electoral process, abusive laws that remain in effect and violence and intimidation by the ruling party all contribute to an environment that is not conducive to free and fair elections.
The Election Resource Centre (ERC) barometer, launched in Harare last week, joined the bandwagon saying: “Access to media remained largely limited with the ruling ZANU PF receiving most coverage and positive reviews compared to other parties.”
The barometer, which tracked the period from January to March 2018, said transparency and accountability of ZEC remained disturbingly low: “During the assessment period, the ERC noted reports indicating rampant vote buying, lack of transparency and accountability on party campaign financing and intimidation associated with demand for voter registration certificates serial number.”
The assessment which purports to represent reality on the ground accross Zimbabwe, was based on focus groups of 96 people and interviews with 36 informants only.
In a discussion paper titled ‘Outposts of Electoral Vulnerabilities – Understanding Systematic Manipulation,’ released in April, the ERC said signs of systematic manipulation of electoral processes ahead of this year’s harmonised elections slated for July 30 are beginning to show.
However, from piecemeal research to lies and exaggerations, regime change agents will do anything and everything to discredit the upcoming elections before they are even conducted.


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