MDC-SA decries exclusion of diaspora vote

The mainstream MDC here has castigated Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa for pushing to exclude millions of Zimbabweans living in political and economic exile from exercising their vote through the recently-passed Electoral Amendment Bill.


Kumbirai Muchemwa, the party’s SA spokesman, said the Bill’s denial of the diaspora vote would shut out about a quarter of the country’s population from taking part in the poll. Tabling the bill before parliament last week, Chinamasa said among the “101” reasons for denying the diaspora vote was that the country did not have the capacity to have polling stations in every country where Zimbabweans have migrated to.

He also highlighted his party’s “sanctions” parrot cry – but Muchemwa said this had no substance as there were embassies and consulates in many countries. “We cannot accept that a man who is either simply incompetent in his duty of accounting for public funds or is willingly diverting such funds can stand up and declare that the same Government has no money.

“Zanu (PF), through its gross mismanagement of the country, caused millions of Zimbabweans to leave their beloved homes and seek refuge and opportunities in other countries. It is the continued insistence of Zanu (PF) on the politics of negativity and refusal to implement agreed upon positions in the GNU that stops Zimbabweans from returning home. That the same shell of a party now insists people it chased away cannot vote is a calamity of monumental proportions,’’ said Muchemwa.

He, however, seems to be singing from a script different from his party back home since it has assented to the exclusion of the vote by agreeing to a cabinet resolution to do so.

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