Comrade Mnangagwa, let us do our Diaspora vote the Rwanda way, the Botswana way, you want to steal using the computer

Dear Comrade Mnangagwa, through the Speaker of Parliament,

Priscilla Chigumba

According to credible news coverage, in the Rwandese recent elections, some 46,955 people living in the Diaspora were expected to cast their votes at 115 polling stations and 155 polling rooms in countries where Rwandese live. Interestingly, the Rwandese vote took place at a time when many African heads of states and governments were in China at the invitation of the Government of China for the China-Africa Summit. Comrade President Emmerson Mnangagwa, you were there in China to see your counterpart cast his vote during that election, meaning that African countries have decided to be transparent and use the paper ballot for their Diaspora nationals to cast their votes, which are counted at the polling stations in the presence of representatives of interested contesting political parties. I have read of the very interesting case for Botswana, where physical ballots are posted and the voting takes place before the elections in Botswana.

In the case of Botswana, external voters register at Botswanan embassies and high commissions abroad and in major cities and centres in countries where there is expected to be an eligible voter population. Australia, South Africa, the UK, the USA and Zimbabwe have had more than one polling station: the additional polling stations have been in cities and in institutions other than the official Botswanan diplomatic missions.

Interestingly, you, Comrade President Emmerson Mnangagwa,  have said you admire the way things are done in Rwanda, and you have said you want the same for Zimbabwe. However, it does not appear you admire the Rwandese transparent Diaspora voting process and you want an electronic voting system provided by a handpicked company from a handpicked country without going to tender. All those who had been warming up to you things you are bringing some positive reforms must now realise the wolf in sheep’s clothing that you are – the crocodile which sheds false tears.

The election processes must be discussed by a multi-party committee, and the Zimbabwe Elections Commission must be dissolved for jumping the gun by kickstarting the process to select a platform for Diaspora vote before the law is even amended as Priscilla Chigumba refused to reform the process for the 2018 election citing legislative reforms that had not taken place. Where does Priscilla Chigumba get her mandate to do these things from? Obviously from you, the double faced President Mnangagwa.

Zimbabweans, know it that we are not going anywhere with your subtle dictatorial style as you deceive the world by saying you are as soft as cotton, when you are a shrewd evil schemer. But some of us are reading into your actions, dear President Mnangagwa, and we will expose you, and we will act to stop this nonsense.

Diaspora based Zimbabweans, never think Ngwena (Mnangagwa) is doing you a favour by rushing to introduce an electronic voting platform to enable you to cast your vote as required by the constitution. Demand to vote the same way the Rwandese do, the same way the people of Botswana in the Diaspora do – manual voting with votes counted at the polling stations in the presence of representatives of the contesting parties. Research on the Diaspora voting practices in other countries which show that the ballot papers are used, and tell Mnangagwa that we should not be different from other countries in the world. Electronic voting can be introduced much later when the current crop of corrupt Zanu PF officials is gone.

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