President Mnangagwa recently said that he would announce the date of the harmonized elections anytime after 12 February. The big question is whether voters will choose the ruling ZANU-PF party or the opposition MDC.
Zimbabwe articles on Democracy Chronicles
News about the struggle for democracy in Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe is not a functioning democracy thanks mostly to decades of misrule by dictator Robert Mugabe. According to Freedom House, "voting is marred by flawed voter registration and balloting, biased media and bribed and threatened voters". Also check out our section on World Democracy and our Africa archives.
The AU should act to strengthen the new government’s capacity to deliver credible, peaceful, free, and fair elections later this year
Southern African governments clamped down on vocal journalists, activists, and opposition politicians in 2017
Voter buying is not a new phenomenon, stands, food, farming implements and other goodies are now know to be used as a carrot and stick measure towards every election.
This year’s harmonized elections with the presidential election, the most exciting in living memory, promises an upheaval. ZANU-PF which has held power since independence could be eliminated in the first round of a presidential ballot.
Afraid of VP Mnangagwa’s rising popularity, Mugabe fired the former as Vice President in early November 2016. This led to dramatic events of 13-24 November 2017 that saw Mugabe resigning.
As tyrants come up against the presidential term-limits included in many multi-party constitutions, a significant number are refusing to relinquish power. Instead, a good number of leaders have sought to secure a third term.
A study in which we look at the level of democracy in four countries where the present incumbent has been in power for more than 15 years and four other countries where two or more Presidents succeeded in office in the last 15 years.
2017 has already seen Zimbabwe’s social movements scaling down efforts to encourage government to act on high unemployment, rampant corruption and upholding with basic human rights due to threats of reprisals.
One-man-rule through successive winnings in multi-party elections can therefore only happen through a botched democratic process transforming any such democracy into a nominal democracy.