Biti warns of a post-polls coup

Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) legislator Tendai Biti has warned the unconstitutional recruitment of agents from spooky Zanu-PF aligned group, Forever Associates Zimbabwe (FAZ) to allegedly tamper with the country’s election process was fertile ground for a military coup.

The politician, who is also CCC co-vice president, was speaking in parliament Wednesday as he demanded Defence and War Veterans Affairs Minister Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri to come clean on the situation.

The mysterious group surfaced during Zanu-PF’s recent primary elections amid claims by some party loyalists it had seized control and was rigging the internal balloting process in Bindura, Muzarabani, Mt Darwin and Rushinga where some cell registers were reported missing.

Since the opening of the voters’ roll inspection by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) late May, CCC has raised alarm over what it claims has been the presence of FAZ agents at inspection centres.

Party spokespersons claim some names were missing in the voters’ roll while some have been moved amid concerns over the possibility of a sinister bid to disenfranchise some known opposition loyalists.

In earlier comments this week, CCC leader Nelson Chamisa said he was informed that “in the rural areas, people are being tormented … by a shadowy and spooky organization called FAZ”.

Likewise, his deputy took the matter to parliament.

“In terms of Chapter 11 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, our Constitution recognises our security forces and security agents, which consist of military, police, prisons and correctional service, and intelligence,” Biti said.

“We respect these institutions and we are proud of these institutions who by virtue of Section of 208, are bound to respect this parliament as an elected civilian authority.

“During this current ongoing voters’ roll inspection exercise, we are seeing at polling stations, a creature and individuals coming from a creature called FAZ.

“They are virtually in every polling station.”

Biti said allowing groups such as FAZ to meddle with electoral processes was recipe for military coups.

“We read that they purport to come from the intelligent service but we know the intelligence service and our intelligent authority.

“What is this creature called FAZ and why is it interfering with our elections. Madam Speaker, if we create parallel structures, it will lead to disaster and military coups,” he said.

Biti added, “May the Minister of Defence come and explain what FAZ is doing in our polling stations when in terms of the law only ZEC officials, political parties and candidates are allowed to be in the polling stations.”

In comments contained in state media Thursday, ZEC vice chairperson Ambassador Rodney Kiwa denied the controversial poll management authority was deliberately trying to disadvantage Zanu-PF opponents.

He described as “mischievous and preposterous” claims that “some members of a particular political party are targeted for exclusion”.

Zimbabwe is set to hold its harmonised election August 23 this year amid rising tensions among the country’s main political parties.

The poll is widely seen as a toss of the coin between President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s Zanu-PF and Chamisa’s CCC.

Source – zimlive

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