The Pre-Election Pact on Electoral Reforms (PREPARE) document launched last Thursday by the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) has been described as nothing but an ambitious document produced by a selfish political party.
Members from different opposition political parties and civic organisations who spoke to this publication said that the PREPARE document was not a product of consultation but was hurriedly launched by Nelson Chamisa to appease his party members who were becoming increasingly agitated by his perceived lack of political action.
Labour, Economists and African Democrats (LEAD) president, Linda Masarira said Chamisa’s PREPARE lacks pragmatism and was just academic in nature.
“The current CCC PREPARE electoral document lacks pragmatism and is just academic in its nature. A pact is a misnomer since no other party, outside CCC is in agreement with this neither was any party consulted. Calling it a pact is an insult to the basic understanding of the English language to say the least. It's laughable to say that a printed paper without a signature from any party is called a pact at law,” said Masarira.
The LEAD president added that the CCC seven pre-election demands were nothing new and said that it was surprising that the document was produced by a party that boasts of having several lawyers among its leadership.
“It’s a document without any action plan. If the Government of Zimbabwe would read this document there would be no real tangible solutions worth implementing because it lacks specific action plans,” added Masarira.
MDC-T national chairperson, Morgan Komichi said that CCC should have consulted other political players first so that they would make demands that were universal to all political parties.
“I don’t want to condemn their efforts but we must complement their effort so as to improve the document. Opposition parties should have a common electoral reform document and make demands with one voice,” said Komichi.
A member of a local CSO who preferred anonymity said that the CCC PREPARE document lacked substance. He added that most of that party’s demands were already being implemented by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) or were already enshrined in the country’s constitution.
“That document (PREPARE) lacked substance. The document failed to acknowledge (Morgan) Tsvangirai’s contribution to the democratisation of the electoral field. It failed also to acknowledge the role of CSOs and other independent organisations in fighting for the improvement of the country’s electoral process, including the demand for diaspora vote,” said the CSO member.
Meanwhile, constitutional lawyer and a third year PhD candidate at the University of Cape Town, Justice Alfred Mavedzenge said that the PREPARE document was likely going to alienate that party with its traditional allies, particularly the students, labour and women movements as it failed to acknowledge the role played by these organisations in their fight for electoral reforms in the country.