The Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) has said it is hoping that the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the African Union (AU) will intervene in Zimbabwe following the disputed 23 August 2023 Harmonised Elections.
CCC rejected the election results after President Emmerson Mnangagwa was declared the winner of the presidential election.
The opposition party’s deputy spokesperson Gift Siziba told NewsDay on Sunday that they have turned to SADC and AU after exhausting all domestic remedies to resolve the electoral dispute. Siziba said:
The crisis which Zimbabwe is facing is not a legal one. We have a political crisis and we are very optimistic that SADC and AU will help Zimbabwe resolve it.
We have exhausted all the domestic remedies that could address the challenges.
He said CCC engaged ZEC on several occasions and also wrote to Mnangagwa about various electoral irregularities, but did not get any response. Said Siziba:
We even wrote to Mnangagwa as the Head of State, we wanted to engage him over various electoral irregularities, but we did not get any response.
At the court, we filed several cases, but we lost most of them, we petitioned the courts over various issues around the voters’ roll, distribution and printing of ballot papers, their printing and storage; we petitioned the courts against FAZ (ZANU PF affiliate Forever Associates of Zimbabwe), but we did not get any favourable response.
Siziba said there is nothing else CCC can do except engage SADC and AU to find a permanent solution to Zimbabwe’s cycle of disputed elections. He said:
Zimbabwe is currently battling a vicious cycle of electoral theft and disputes. What we want now is a permanent solution to resolve the crisis.
We do not want a temporary solution because we are going to have a repeat of what we had previously. So the issues here are beyond the courts.
As it is, we have no other solution except the intervention of Sadc and the AU.
All the Chapter 12 institutions, the Human Rights Commission, and the National Peace and Reconciliation are aware of our issues.
We even took our alternative Electoral Amendment Bill to Parliament and we also raised these issues in our pre-electoral pact document.
Reports suggest that the final SADC Election Observer Mission (SEOM) report was handed over to President Hakainde Hichilema of Zambia on Saturday evening and is believed to be critical of the manner in which Zimbabwe’s Harmonised Elections were conducted.
President Hichilema is the chairman of the SADC Troika that put together the election observer team.
Hichilema and the other two Heads of State of members of the Troika, Tanzania and Namibia, stayed away from Mnangagwa’s inauguration held on 04 September 2023.