WHILE the major highlight of the August 23 harmonised general elections was the peace and tranquillity that dominated proceedings before, during and after the polls, another key feature has been the manner Western-funded elements within and outside the country have been frantically trying to tarnish the polls through cooked reports.
The vigilance that Zimbabwe has so relied on since the horrific days of colonialism is now required more than ever in order for the country to forge on its people-oriented trajectory it has been pursuing vigorously over the last five years.
President Emmerson Mnangagwa cruised to an easy victory, notching 52,60 percent against opposition CCC Nelson Chamisa’s 44,03 percent.
ZANU PF claimed 136 seats to the opposition’s 73 in the 209 that were up for grabs in the National Assembly.
The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC), the prime target of the opposition’s wrath, stepped up to the plate and acquitted itself, leaving the usual naysayers latching onto the opposition and the West’s now tired ‘rigging’ song.
As expected, they took sides with the opposition and the West whose fingerprints were all over some of the reports that were released by some observer missions whose alliances and allegiances are dubious and questionable.
If there was any doubt, especially from the country’s opponents, about the existence of democracy, which they have fervently claimed is non-existent in Zimbabwe, then August 23 served as a timely reminder that it is well and truly alive and will not be diluted by anyone, especially those opposed to the country’s peace and security.
They were supposed to drag the country back into the global spotlight again ‘for the wrong reasons’, even taking the glow from the historic BRICS Summit that was held in South Africa the day Zimbabweans took to the ballot.
They too were supposed to defile the tenets of what the opposition in the country and their handlers nauseatingly call ‘free, and fair elections’ which in essence is any result that pushes ZANU PF out of power.
There was not supposed to be peace in the country but anarchy.
The violence that the opposition and the West yearned for never came.
And that the world was then subjected to the usual ‘rigging’ mantra confirmed the frustration in the opposition and Western circles.
As has become the norm, the claims will not hold water due to their now irritating trend of failing to provide evidence to back their allegations.
As Zimbabweans went on about their business on Thursday last week, a day after voting, undisturbed and undeterred by the politics there was no doubt that the country had deftly navigated the terrains of democracy and that there would be grudging withdrawal of Western-precipitated grumblings on the credibility of the process.
But they did not — and could not.
Signs that they had planned to tarnish those polls had been abound days before August 23.
They could not mask their plan to push for a CCC victory, resorting to their usual intrusive tactics by sending to the country dubious and compromised elements disguised as observers and analysts — needless to say they were shamelessly exposed.
Former SABC chief operating officer, ardent Zimbabwean critic and now regime change agenda outfit Good Governance Africa CEO, Chris Maroleng, was deported at 4:15pm on August 17, together with his three colleagues, for misrepresenting themselves to immigration officers in Bulawayo.
The quartet claimed they wanted to observe the elections but were exposed after it turned out they were on a destabilisation mission.
It turned out they were in the country to conduct ‘vital research on election conditions and challenges in Zimbabwe,’ something far-detached from observer missions’ mandate.
Next was the rubble rousing UK academic and Zimbabwe Government critic, Professor Stephen Chan, who was duly deported on Monday after the Department for Immigration was not satisfied with his reason for visiting the country.
However, information from security revealed that Professor Chan was in the country to train insurgents.
“He is seeking to be in the country as part of a broader plan by the opposition to trigger mayhem if the poll results are not in their favour,” The Herald reported last week.
Professor Chan who applied for a visa through Paul Danisa of Jindokai Old Hararians, unwittingly let his insurgency cat out of the bag through his frivolous claims that he wanted to be in the country to train karate from August 21 to September.
The karate training timing was naturally too questionable for the Government’s comfort.
“I was deported on arrival in Zimbabwe. The insurgency story was clearly a cover. They just don’t want people to see an election that is not fully proper,” Professor Chan wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter.
“The comments by the officials who refused me entry to Zimbabwe are untrue.
They never asked me anything.
I never mentioned karate at any time.
In fact we said little.
I was escorted off one plane, had paperwork issued, then escorted back onto another one.
I teach karate free of charge around the world including annually in Zambia and Zimbabwe.
But I cannot travel just when I like.
Right now it is the UK university summer recess and I was happy it coincided with the elections.
I have attended all but 2 of the Zimbabwe elections, including the one in 1980 in which I was deeply involved as an observer.
So it’s become a tradition for me because I care for the future of the country and the future of democracy.
I actually wasn’t going to write a book about this one.
If a few short tweets and newspaper comments are destabilising the government, the government must be much weaker than it pretends to be.”
Maroleng and Professor Chan were not alone in the destabilisation project.
Self-proclaimed human rights campaigner Rashid Mahiya, lawyers Arnold Tsunga and Musa Kika as well as the noisy cleric, Bishop Ancelimo Magaya, were denied accreditation to observe the elections by ZEC after they failed the requisite security checks.
On Friday, the world would be subjected to what was supposed to be a bombshell when the head of the SADC Observer Mission, a convicted criminal and appointee of Zambian President Hakainde Hichilema and current Chair of SADC Organ on Politics, Defence and Security, Nevers Mumba, deviated from his mandate and laid siege on the country’s Constitution, lying about its laws and claiming, among other things, that the judiciary had been ‘compromised’.
The Zimbabwean Parliament and ZEC were not spared either from Mumba’s unrestrained, reckless attacks with the High Court and Constitutional Court accused of being ‘corrupt’.
No shred of evidence was presented to back those malicious and damaging claims.
He also attacked the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Amendment Act which was enacted by Parliament as if it stopped anyone from voting.
Borrowing from the West and the opposition’s anti-Zimbabwe narrative, Mumba, who was fired as Zambia Vice-President in 2004, after lying that a fugitive Zambian spy was being housed by the DRC, was also once convicted of lying to a police officer in Zambia in 2018, openly showed bias towards the opposition by latching onto issues such as the delimitation process that were dealt with by Parliament where CCC had significant representation.
He claimed that he got information which formed a large chunk of his ‘report’ from stakeholders, in apparent reference to CCC which availed the said information to him.
We will not spare Western countries’ biased reports which were authored from CCC offices in Harare and these would be exposed in the coming weeks.
The heart-warming thing about the Mumba fiasco is that Harare has since indicated that it will embark on a regional offensive to present facts to SADC and have the bloc dismiss that Western-authored ‘report’.
As the country and the world awaits the inauguration of President Emmerson Mnangagwa, it is imperative that peace continues to prevail.