Just before the 2018 harmonized elections, I wrote a piece telling Nelson Chamisa that he made a blunder by accepting to participate in an election that was going to legitimize ZANU PF and its military government. I also wrote another one (just after the announcement of presidential results) cautioning Nelson Chamisa against appealing for the result in ZANU PF government’s courts. Therefore, this piece seeks to prove that the ConCourt proceedings were subjective and biased.
There is no doubt that ZANU PF’s military government has been legitimized by the ConCourt event of 22nd August 2018 (and that was my fear). It started with ZEC. Judge Chigumba and team were subjective and biased, they did not provide the voters roll as per their laws, they refused to correct errors observed in their voters roll and they provided a different voters roll during the election day. This was unacceptable, that was the point ZEC and ZANU PF started to temper with the election process.
There is no doubt that ZANU PF is in control of ZEC, parliament, police, CIO, army and other important organs of the State. I am yet to prove on whether the judiciary is also under State capture but I was very shocked with the conduct of Chief Justice Malaba during the ConCourt proceedings. There was clear evidence that the playing ground was not level.
At one point in time, CJ Malaba told ZEC lawyer Kanengoni; “REPEAT [what he had said on v11 forms’ arrangement] BECAUSE THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT”. That was unacceptable and the CJ was not supposed to include the word ‘important’. He was supposed to have remained neutral and avoided the word important. There was no problem if such kinds of words were used equally across the board.
Advocate Mpofu (representing Nelson Chamisa) suffered unfair attack and interjections from the ‘learned’ CJ Malaba. The CJ in most of the occasions did not give Mpofu time to respond. However, Adv. Mpofu was not intimidated, he kept on fighting. The purpose of any court is to provide justice to every citizen in a fair and objective manner, what we saw from the CJ should have been a breach of the judiciary ethics.
CJ Malaba did not ask a single question to the lawyers representing president Mnangagwa, what he emphasized during his exchange with Adv. Mpofu was that ED was a clean man despite allegations that ED attempted to buy votes by supplying agriculture inputs in June and did not ask for evidence in support of this allegation. The reaction of CJ Malaba to ZEC and ED’s lawyers was perfectly positive. Adv. Mpofu had a hostile reaction from the CJ, I am not trying to undermine the judiciary’s independence here but I am just pointing to some of the unethical behaviors observed during the proceedings.
Personally, I am not concerned with the judgment that the ConCourt is going to deliver on Nelson Chamisa-ED case but it has come to the attention of the entire world that, Judge Chigumba and her team did a shoddy job. Adv. Mpofu managed to prove beyond doubt that ZEC changed presidential results three time after official announcement. The ZEC lawyer accepted but did not quote the law that they used to change presidential results without the party agents. There is no doubt that ZEC cooked results three time within seven days from the day of their proclamation.
It was also a shock to note that between 40k to 60k teachers did not vote. The affidavits authored by the two teachers’ unions can testify to this. The teachers who were deprived of voting reported to their unions. Judge Chigumba and team allowed the police and soldiers on duty to vote in advance but teachers were not given the opportunity to do the same. That was a crime and Judge Chigumba should be responsible.
ZEC failed to answer on allegations related to replications and duplications of results in 16 cases, they failed to provide v11 of the 14 cases. Justice Kanengoni claimed that the coincidence was normal and above board. Judge Chigumba and team knew what really happened and Zimbabweans were let down.
The difference between presidential and parliamentary tallies was not explained by ZEC to the satisfaction of natural justice and there is no doubt that 40k votes were tempered with. In my own understanding, I have no doubt that the evidence provided by Adv. Mpofu is enough to overturn ED-win, we shall see how the judges are going to explain the difference between presidential and parliament figures and the change (three times) of presidential results made by ZEC against the law. This evidence is enough to overturn ED victory the issue of residual evidence is another issue what Adv. Mpofu did was to demonstrate that 0.67% or 0.8% votes were compromised, that is why they were not concerned with the residual evidence.
I am still convinced that the level plain during the ConCourt hearing was against Nelson Chamisa and that president Mnangagwa was treated with kid gloves. I want to urge MDC-alliance team to leave a big (98%) room/space for disappointment and accept the worst ahead of the final verdict. ZANU has been capturing all state organs from independence to present.
I have a feeling that MDC alliance may break anytime and some MDC alliance members may blame Nelson Chamisa for the lose yet they were the ones who forced him to participate in a predetermined election. I am therefore appealing for calm and maturity from all opposition supporters during this time of ‘democracy trial’ in Zimbabwe.
I know that ZANU PF is going to bully everyone of us through its ‘computer generated’ two thirds majority in parliament, they will try to ‘rig legally’ the 2023 election. I want to urge Zimbabweans to think ‘out of the box’ by breaking all such oppressive laws. ‘It is very difficult to win elections in Africa without breaking the law, the African leaders are always wining elections by manipulating the parliament’.
This is not the time for Zimbabweans to give up. Each and every one of us should think about the future of the future generation. Chitepo, Tongogara and Masuku were not cowards like us.
Don Chigumba is a mixed methods research specialist can be found on twitter @Donchigumba