Tags: zimbabwe | election | mugabe | rigged

Tsvangirai: Mugabe Will Rig Zimbabwe Election

By    |   Friday, 19 Jul 2013 09:39 AM

Saying that Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe is determined to retain power by any means possible and is padding the electoral roll with dead voters, opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai declared he would refuse any invitation to remain prime minister in a coalition government if he loses the July 31 election.
 
Tsvangirai termed the survival of Zimbabwe’s coalition government a “regressive step,” saying Mugabe broke off cooperation in the run-up to this year’s presidential election and “doesn’t believe in a free and fair vote.”

He said his opposition party, the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), had examined voter rolls and concluded that 100,000 people over the age of 100 were registered.

“That number is definitely fictitious,” Tsvangirai told the London Telegraph.

Meanwhile, only a quarter of 18- to 25-year-old voters - a group more likely to back the MDC - are understood to have been registered.

“The voters’ roll has become the center for the rigging mechanism,” he said

Before Zimbabwe’s last two presidential elections in 2002 and 2008, pro-Mugabe mobs killed hundreds of people. But until now there has been little bloodshed in this year’s campaign.

This time, Tsvingirai said, Mugabe, 89, who has ruled the country since 1980, was relying on cheating rather than violence to guarantee victory.

“We’ll have a peaceful but rigged outcome,” the MDC chief said. “Although there is relative peace, the administration of the vote is so chaotic I can only foresee disaster.”

If he were to be elected president, Tsvingirai said his priority would be reviving the economy and that he had no interest in retribution or revenge against Mugabe and his allies. “It is not going to bring back our loved ones who have been killed, maimed and tortured,” he said.

Tsvingirai added that Mugabe’s seizure of white-owned farms would not be overturned. “I think politically you cannot reverse the land-reform program even with its mistakes,” he said. “We know the torture and violence that took place” in the Mugabe government’s land-reform efforts.

For “the stability of the country,” he said, it would be better to compensate people mistreated by the government instead of saying, “go back to your land.”

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Saying that Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe is determined to retain power by any means possible and is padding the electoral roll with dead voters, opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai declared he would refuse any invitation to remain prime minister in a coalition government.
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Friday, 19 Jul 2013 09:39 AM
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