Mwonzora chickens out presidential race

R&M Writers

Opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) leader Douglas Mwonzora has withdrawn from the 23 August 2023 Presidential election race citing election management irregularities.

Mwonzora’s decision was linked to what he described as unfair treatment by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC), and decried the expulsion of 87 of his parliamentarians which has left him without the ability to form a government which commands good power representation in the house of Assembly.

This leaves only 24 MDC constituency candidates who successfully filed nomination papers.
His actions are anchored on section 107 of the electoral Act.

“I, with the concurrence of my party have withdrawn my candidature in this election.

The smaller opposition leader indicated that his move to withdraw from the presidential race ahead of 2023 harmonized elections is to boycott elections mismanagement by ZEC.

“We are boycotting this farce, we are boycotting this sham, we are boycotting this presidential election.

“We come to this conclusion after serious consideration, after looking at our founding values. Or aim as the MDC is to take over governmental power through peaceful democratic constitutional means. Govern differently and change the life of the Zimbabwean people for the better,” he said.

He revealed that he had advised ZEC of his withdrawal in a bid for them to remove him from the ballot paper.

He explained that he had specifically requested the exclusion of his name on the ballot paper although the onus remains on ZEC which is expected to issue a public notification of his withdrawal.

“We have seen massive disenfranchisement, mass disqualification of a good number of people. There is no doubt why the MDC is being treated in a different manner from other political parties, it is because the MDC took ZEC to court over delimitation.

“The delimitation that we fought against is now in force and its effects are now clear on this election. Right now as we are speaking ZEC is busy changing boundaries of wards and constituencies. It has added more than a 1,000 more polling stations because delimitation was invalid.

“Having seriously considered this, and being a patriotic Zimbabwean, I took part in the crafting of the constitution of our land. I believe that the constitution is not there for decoration. I believe that there is a minimum standard of integrity required in our electoral system, and I believe that the mass disenfranchisement of our people, the discrimination of one party by the election management body Zimbabwe is set to hold it’s general elections on August 23 with a plethora of political parties and actors claiming that the political environment is not a conducive one,” said Mwonzora.

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