MDC Considers 2023 Poll Boycott Over ‘Rigged’ 2018 Elections

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By Tonderai Saharo

MASVINGO: MDC President Nelson Chamisa has hinted his party may be forced to boycott the 2023 national elections if Zanu PF does not own up to manipulating the 2018 elections in its favour.

Chamisa and his party maintain the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) rigged the 2018 poll in favour of the Zanu PF candidate, Emmerson Mnangagwa.

The main opposition party has since then refused to recognise Mnangagwa as the legitimate leader of Zimbabwe.

Speaking Friday to hundreds of party supporters at Mucheke Hall in Masvingo where the party was celebrating two years since the death of founding leader Morgan Tsvangirai, Chamisa suggested his party may boycott the 2023 elections.

“Zanu PF should accept they rigged the 2018 harmonised elections. If they do accept that, we might not take part in the 2023 elections until the 2018 elections dispute is resolved,” he said.

He also ruled out any prospects of dialogue between his party and Zanu PF, and instead, called for unity among Zimbabweans to fight the Mnangagwa administration.

“We need hope in this country, Mnangagwa has no hope in the direction the country is taking. Tsvangirai left a legacy of love, he was a unifier and before he died, he told me to incorporate the likes of Tendai Biti and Welshman Ncube back into the party for it to succeed.

“We will ensure we lead the people properly until we deliver real independence to the people. That is what I was taught by Tsvangirai,” he said.

Chamisa told his supporters that he was anointed by Tsvangirai to lead the party and he carries the vision of the party and expects the entire MDC leadership to be disciplined in following the vision of the party.

“We want a people’s government, not this one which was elected by the Constitutional Court. The people’s government will ensure our industries are restored and our people are employed. We are also fighting for the dignity of every Zimbabwean to be restored.

“Mnangagwa is taking us back to Rhodesia. He is now possessed with Robert Mugabe and (Ian) Smith’s demons. He is up to no good and is changing the country’s Constitution more that what the late Mugabe did in 40 years, but Mnangagwa wants to change it 27 times in one year.

“The way forward is for me and you to organise our country. The whole country should be prepared. We don’t want to reach May or June before we have dealt with these issues. Mnangagwa won’t lead this country after that,”
Chamisa said.