HARARE – The People’s Patriotic Party, an opposition party in Zimbabwe, has informed United Nations Secretary-General Mr.
Antonio Guterres of their decision to boycott the country’s upcoming harmonized elections scheduled for August 23, 2023. The party alleges that the elections will not be conducted in a fair and transparent environment.
In a letter addressed to Mr. Guterres, the leader of the People’s Patriotic Party, Zvaringeni Samuel Chasi, states that the elections lack representation of civil rights and the general masses of Zimbabwe. The party draws a parallel between the current situation in Zimbabwe and the period between 1979 and 1980 when the United Nations Security Council passed resolutions 445 and 448.
According to the People’s Patriotic Party, their independence lies in the hands of their forefathers and ancestors who fought for the liberation of Zimbabwe. However, they claim that their aspirations have never been realized. The party accuses the ruling party, ZANU PF, of looting the country’s resources and perpetrating genocidal massacres against citizens.
The letter highlights various atrocities committed by ZANU PF, including the Gukurahundi massacres of 1983-87, which resulted in the deaths of approximately 40,000 people. The People’s Patriotic Party accuses the ZANU PF junta regime of forcing millions of citizens into exile as refugees or asylum seekers.
The party justifies its decision to boycott the elections as a stand against what they perceive as the terrorist actions of ZANU PF. They believe that participating in fraudulent elections would be a betrayal of the citizens of Zimbabwe. The letter outlines several grounds for boycotting the elections, including concerns about electoral reforms, dictatorship, lack of peaceful and free elections, nullification of past inquiry reports, captured judiciary, delimitation boundaries, partisan electoral commission, controlled voters’ roll, selective application of the law, autocratically inflated nomination court fees, and other factors they deem as hindering democracy.
Furthermore, the letter mentions the introduction of the Patriotic Bill, which restricts freedom of speech and targets opposition voices. It also alleges that traditional leaders are being instructed to force their communities to vote for ZANU PF under the threat of eviction, and there is a deployment of thousands of personnel from the Joint Operations Command nationwide to influence the election outcome.
The People’s Patriotic Party contends that the elections lack a conducive environment for fairness and transparency. They view the boycott as a means to defend the principles of democracy and fight for a better future.