ZANU-PF candidate for Bulawayo’s Cowdray Park, Professor Mthuli Ncube, has paid tribute to the electorate in the constituency for coming out in large numbers to vote in Wednesday’s harmonised election.
While official poll results were yet to be announced by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC), Prof Ncube commended the peaceful conduct and patience shown by voters during the process. He said despite the earlier logistical challenges that resulted in delays in the opening of some polling stations, voters in Cowdray Park constituency demonstrated political maturity.
Some polling stations in Cowdray Park delayed voting due to the late delivery of ballot papers, leading some of the stations to end the process late into the night forcing counting and collation of results to continue up to yesterday morning.
“I am happy with the electorate in Cowdray Park, they are very patient. There was a delay with the ballot papers but they came out in their numbers to exercise their constitutional right,” said Prof Ncube.
“It’s your right to express yourself and for a candidate like myself, you can vote for yourself. I understand the process went on in some places even till late in the night.”
Prof Ncube could not be drawn to comment on the poll outcome, which had not been officially announced by end of the day yesterday. He, however, said the Zanu-PF government was determined to continue rolling out development programmes to improve people’s livelihoods.
“I don’t think anyone should fight development and even those in other parties should not fight it. This is a major shift and it is a good thing and everyone should support this,” said Prof Ncube.
He also commented on the effort being made by Zimbabwe to resolve the national debt through facilitating the arrears clearance programmes, which includes pursuing critical reforms, which are at the heart of elections and governance.
“The pillar that is being looked into especially where elections are concerned is the governance pillar. That is why you see the former Mozambican President Joaquim Chissano is here as an observer and checking that indeed we have a peaceful election,” said Prof Ncube.
“This is a major agenda as we tick boxes as we try to deal with what needs to be done to satisfy critics. Once we are done with elections, we will then further fine tune our economic reforms and also governance reforms and make progress with the land issues.”
He said Zimbabwe will be working closely with the International Monetary Fund in its endeavour to clearing arrears, an albatross on the economy. “Our economy is doing so well even with that albatross. A growth of 6,5 percent in 2022, 8,5 percent in 2021 and this year we expect a growth closer to six percent,” said Prof Ncube.
“This is an incredible growth in an economy, which has an albatross of debt with the international community. Once the arrears are cleared you will see a miraculous transformation in the entire economy in addition to what has already happened.”
He said the economic transformation of the country includes food security, which will lead the country to securing foreign currency through exports, as well as the country’s infrastructural development.
“The power sector is also thriving and this is a very remarkable achievement. Power outages are a thing of the past and this is a remarkable achievement in terms of an economy that is under the albatross of debt arrears,” said Prof Ncube.
Source – The Chronicle