So partisan are some of our people that even if there is a coalitionÂ for election purposes, there is a small percentage of people who will not vote for a candidate that is not from their party, and that small percentage can cost us votes, so it has to be very minimal. A way to increase the chances of getting more votes against Mugabe is allowing the party with the biggest followingÂ to provide the Presidential candidate.
Going back to the theory about a certain percentage of people not voting for a presidential candidate who is not from their party, let usÂ estimate the percentage to be 1 percent, and let us assume Zimbabwe First has one thousand supporters, MDC-T has 500 supporters, People’s Democratic Party has 2000 supporters, it would make sense to have a candidate proposed by the People’s Democratic Party as presidential candidate because if a candidate from another partyÂ was to contest on behalf of the opposition parties,Â the highest number of potential votes would be lost when those opposed to Zanu PF dictatorship expect every vote to count.
Election is about scoring as many votes as one can, so it is about the voters; it is about the people who vote the leaders in, so efforts to remove Zanu PF dictatorship must take that into account.
We have already heard Tendai Biti and his party prematurely endorse Dr. Joyce Mujuru as their preferred candidate for the opposition coalition. Such political grandstanding will not remove Zanu PF dictatorship. Biti and his party seem to want to sell their plot using the fact thatÂ Zimbabwe First has more people with a liberation war history, which in my opinion does not count. People should note that after the 2008 madness, Zanu PF realised that violence attracts negative international publicity and they could international intervention, so in 2013 they came up with a different plan, NIKUV, and we are already aware that they had hatched a plot to connive with the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission so that they membership registered if formatted in a similar fashion to the voters roll. Under that strategy, they would have privately recorded theirÂ members and sabotaged national voters registration by starving the exercise of resources so thatÂ fewer people non-aligned to Zanu PF would manage to register, and then they were to upload they database into the voters’ roll, rendering the Zimbabwe First officials’ military credentials useless.
The trouble is that politicians sometimes stopÂ thinking logicallyÂ because of selfishness and fail to read the political mood. We witnessed this in 2008 when MDCÂ then led by Professor Mutambara and the MDC-T failed to unite forces because the Mutambara led MDC overestimated their worthiness. By Tendai Biti’s admission, the parties failed to unite just because of two parliamentary seats. The Mutambara-led MDC could have secured a much more number of seats had they not overestimated themselves and claimed more than the generous offer that was on the table. For that reason, I would suggest that the parties forming the coalition only present the Presidential candidate as a united force, but allow all parties to contest as many parliamentary seats as they wish to. However, should the coalition win the Presidential election, the President must allocate cabinet posts to members of the other parties in the coalition based on the percentage of votes each party obtains.
But all this will work only if credible, free and fair, undisputed elections are held. Jonathan Moyo is on recording saying Zanu PF will not reform the electoral process because he knows his party will lose in a free and fair election, so electoral reforms will not come without a fight. Let us unite to fight for electoral reforms. If genuine reforms were guaranteed, there would not even be need for a coalition, but this time round a coalition is needed until the next elections after the 2018 elections.
Let us unite, and support the candidate provided by the party with the biggest support base if we want to remove Zanu PF from the equation and move the country forward. Let us put Zimbabwe First rather than put ministerial positions first. Let us think about the mass suffering that willÂ cease with the removal of a dictatorial party from power.