Opposition political parties in Zimbabwe are calling for the 2023 harmonized elections to be postponed due to rising tension and violence in the country. “From a pragmatic perspective, I don’t think that we need elections in 2023,” said Linda Masarira, the president of the Labour, Economists, and African Democrats party (LEAD). “The political atmosphere has been tense for a while, promising a very intolerant, violent and bloody election.”
Herbert Chamuka, the leader of the People’s Unity Party, added that there are a number of issues that need to be resolved before the elections can take place, including electoral reforms. “Even if we are to go for the 2023 elections and they lose to the opposition, they will find ways to manipulate the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) and withhold results until they cook up numbers in their favour,” Chamuka said.
The Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) was recently denied clearance by the police to hold end-of-year rallies, and over 2,000 cases of political violence, including two deaths, were recorded in 2022 alone. “In as much as elections are a constitutional requirement, there is a time we should also be honest with ourselves and accept the reality that elections in Zimbabwe are a peace spoiler,” Masarira said.