Breaking News

Mugabe readies for crunch elections

by AFP
07 January 2013 | 3313 Views
The Zanu-PF's annual conference, which begins on Friday, is the last before the country's much-anticipated national polls scheduled for next year.

Mugabe, Zimbabwe's leader since independence from Britain 32 years ago, hopes to use the elections to tighten his grip on power.

The veteran leader is currently locked in a shaky power-sharing government with longtime rival Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai.

And he faces a series of other challenges: the dire state of the country has made his rule deeply unpopular, and his allies have begun jockeying to replace the 88-year-old despite the fact that he is officially the party candidate.

Analysts say Mugabe's party has little to entice voters, and will likely deliver a populist message of black empowerment, even if his so-called indigenisation policy aimed at redistributing wealth to black Zimbabweans has often served the president's cronies more than the country.

"This time their message is centred around indigenisation, but it's meaningless to the majority of the population struggling to earn a living," said Takavafira Zhou, a political analyst from Masvingo State University.

'Self-enrichment for the elite'
The controversial indigenisation law was passed two years ago, forcing all foreign-owned firms to cede a 51%share to locals in what Mugabe says is a reversal of imbalances created during colonial rule.

But in fact the programme is about "self-enrichment for the elite in Zanu-PF," said Earnest Mudzengi, an independent analyst.

Running under the theme "indigenise, empower, develop and create jobs", the two-day congress will be held at the party's 5 000-seater conference centre on the outskirts of the central city of Gweru.

The conference comes as the party battles to patch up after factionalism cost it dearly in the 2008 general elections, where for the first time since independence in 1980 it lost its majority in Parliament.

Critics say Zanu-PF as a party has run out of fresh ideas.

"Zanu-PF is a sunset political movement which is not forward-moving. They cannot even discuss critical issues like succession, which is affecting the party," said Mudzengi.

Implementation
Little new is expected to come out of the conference, which "will likely be discussing the same old rhetoric of fighting imperialists and preaching about indigenisation, which they do not have the capacity to implement", according to Mudzengi.

If free and fair elections are held "under the current state of the economy and public perception, Zanu-PF will lose", he said.

Analyst Takavafira Zhou said that because the party's chances of victory "are next to nothing", a repeat of the violence that rocked the 2008 elections is probable.

"It's highly likely that they will manipulate the flawed electoral system and use violence to force themselves back in office," said Zhou.

Zanu-PF spokesperson Rugare Gumbo dismissed allegations his party would resort to violence.

"We are clear of our policy that we do not approve violence," he said.

Securing votes
Gumbo said he is confident the party's policies will deliver electoral success.

"We have developed policies such as the land reform and indigenisation policies that we believe will secure votes for us," he said. "Our policies are sought by ordinary people."

Mugabe was forced into the current coalition government to stop a wave of violence around the disputed 2008 vote and halt an economic tailspin. Regional leaders brokered the power-sharing deal to avoid a full-scale conflict.

The deal also pushed for political, security, electoral and media reforms, which observers say have been slow in coming and limited in scope.




"We haven't seen reforms in the country, especially in the electoral sector," said independent analyst Mudzengi, who said the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission is still staffed with Zanu-PF sympathisers.

"The electoral system may be manipulated in favour of Zanu-PF," he said.


Elections

Source: AFP

Should airtime and street vendors pay the $1 a day State levy?

Yes
11.32%
No
82.55%
Desperation
6.13%
848

Comments

News Updates

Email:

Latest News

Six die in buss, lorry accident - SIX people died on the spot yesterda...

by Staff reporter | 31 August 2014 | 222 Views

Prostitutes using juju to get clients - "It's funny how people are now...

by Peter Matika | 31 August 2014 | 253 Views

Bosso keeper in SA on trials - HIGHLANDERS' goalkeeper Munyaradzi Diya...

by STaff reporter | 31 August 2014 | 164 Views

IMF delegation to visit Zimbabwe - An International Monetary Fund (IMF...

by Staff Reporter | 30 August 2014 | 1237 Views

Zanu PF will continue to lead Zimbabwe says Mujuru

by Staff reporter | 30 August 2014 | 2514 Views

Honorable Minister Nhema home, with us - Zimbabwe has almost metamorp...

by Zisunko Ndlovu | 30 August 2014 | 3166 Views

14 year-old arrested for sex with cow - A 14-YEAR-OLD Headlands boy w...

by Staff reporter | 30 August 2014 | 2467 Views

Zipra veterans, Umkhonto WeSizwe seek stronger ties - Zipra veterans ...

by Staff reporter | 30 August 2014 | 1316 Views

Mugabe is destroying not saving Zanu-PF - President Robert Mugabe has ...

by Tawanda Majoni | 30 August 2014 | 1756 Views

White farm attack victims praise Zimbabwe cops - The family of Dave an...

by Staff reporter | 30 August 2014 | 2495 Views

Robert Mugabe suspicious of his army generals - President Robert Mugab...

by Staff reporter | 30 August 2014 | 3383 Views

Masomere send a bold message to Dynamos - NEW How Mine coach Luke "Vah...

by Paul Mundandi | 30 August 2014 | 1851 Views

Bosso players meet fans

by Ricky Zililo | 30 August 2014 | 2518 Views

Zimbabwe tops on child marriages - Zimbabwe is among top countries in ...

by Staff reporter | 30 August 2014 | 1850 Views

Limpopo Bridge toll fees increased - Motorists travelling to South Afr...

by Staff reporter | 30 August 2014 | 2458 Views

4,000 Zimbabweans languish in SA prisons - Close to 4 000 Zimbabweans ...

by Staff reporter | 30 August 2014 | 3108 Views

Man loses tooth in fight over dirty pots - A FIGTREE man has been sent...

by Sukulwenkosi Dube | 30 August 2014 | 1692 Views

'Zanu-PF to honour election promises' - THE Minister of Justice, Legal...

by Nduduzo Tshuma | 30 August 2014 | 2278 Views

Bank official swindles teachers of $4 600 - SIX Harare teachers allege...

by Staff reporter | 30 August 2014 | 1982 Views

Zanu-PF MP in adulterous storm - ZANU-PF legislator for Mhondoro-Ngezi...

by Prosper Dembedza | 30 August 2014 | 2490 Views

Zimbabwe MPs steal from each other - Members of Parliament are stealin...

by Staff reporter | 30 August 2014 | 1485 Views

Bulawayo honours Payne - The Bulawayo City Council has given befitting...

by Staff reporter | 30 August 2014 | 1168 Views

Senior Zanu-PF official up for assault - LOSING Zanu-PF candidate for ...

by Fungai Lupande | 30 August 2014 | 1440 Views

Varsity student kidnaps, rapes girl, 3 - A MIDLANDS State University s...

by Timothy Makohliso | 30 August 2014 | 1788 Views

Thabitha Khumalo eyes MDC-T chair post - MDC-T Bulawayo East legislato...

by Nduduzo Tshuma | 30 August 2014 | 1099 Views

Entertainment

ZBC receives TV programmes from South Korea - The Korean Ambassador to...

by Staff Reporter | 29 August 2014 | 1717 Views

Roki cancels SA show

by Sophia Chese | 29 August 2014 | 1590 Views

Zimbabwe Got Talent on the cards - CHINESE Federation of Zimbabwe (CFZ...

by Staff reporter | 28 August 2014 | 1470 Views

Tuku to Deliver Inaugural Hugh Masekela Lecture

by Staff Reporter | 28 August 2014 | 1773 Views

Controversy over Bev's album - Newly-appointed Msasa Bricks Ambassador...

by Staff reporter | 27 August 2014 | 2230 Views

Viewers slam 'sub-standard' ZBCtv program - VARIOUS ZBCtv viewers have...

by Staff reporter | 27 August 2014 | 2268 Views

John Legend cancels Zimbabwe show

by Showbiz Reporter | 27 August 2014 | 4539 Views

Macheso's yet to be released album sold on Harare streets - Pirates ha...

by Staff reporter | 26 August 2014 | 3216 Views