No going back on polls: ZANU PF

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THE call by ZANU PF for elections to be held this year is in line with the Global Political Agreement (GPA) roadmap and there is nothing unusual about the move, the Party’s Secretary for Information and Publicity, Cde Rugare Gumbo, said last week. In an exclusive interview with The Patriot at the Party’s headquarters yesterday, Cde Gumbo said ZANU PF was simply respecting the letter and spirit of the GPA roadmap which gave birth to the inclusive Government hence his Party’s pronouncements on elections were in line with the agreement “We are saying the country should go for elections this year because that is what the GPA says and this is clearly spelt out in the agreement which says elections must be held after two years,” he said. “And by calling for elections this year, we have not defied anyone, but we are simply respecting the letter and spirit of the GPA so there is absolutely nothing unusual about us or anyone else in the country saying elections must be held. “Remember the GPA says there shall be a constitution making process which will be followed by a referendum which will determine whether people want a new constitution or not and this is exactly what we are doing and I don’t see how we are defying by simply following what we agreed on.” He said the GPA’s life lapsed in February and the country decided to extend its lifespan so that other processes agreed on can be completed and stressed that it would be wrong and illegal to continue extending the lifespan of the agreement. “The GPA tenure ended in February and we agreed as a country to extend its lifespan so that other unfinished programmes can be completed during the extension. But we cannot go beyond this year with the agreement as this would be both unfair and illegal to continue giving life to something like that,” he said. This past Wednesday the Party’s highest decision- making body, the Politburo met and agreed that their position of holding elections this year still stood despite protestations on the issue from some quarters in the country. Addressing the media after Wednesday’s meeting, Cde Gumbo said ZANU PF’s position on elections had not changed adding that elections would be held this year. “There is no change, we maintain that elections are to be held this year,” he said. He dismissed claims from some quarters that the environment was not conducive for the holding of free and fair elections this year. “That is luxury, tell me where you have found an environment perfect for elections?” he said.

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