HomeLocalZanu PF loses battle for 2011 polls

Zanu PF loses battle for 2011 polls

Negotiators from Mugabe’s Zanu PF and the two MDCs last week crafted a blueprint for the next elections, agreeing that polls this year were virtually impossible.

The drafts have been sent to the Southern African Development Community (Sadc) and principals of the three parties for approval.

Mugabe, with his back against the wall following a stinging rebuke by regional leaders, might be forced to delay elections and implement the recommendations contained in the election roadmap.

Key among the issues contained in the electoral blueprint are the constitution-making process and electoral reforms, which have to be completed before elections.

The constitution-making process, already behind schedule, is viewed as the biggest impediment to holding elections, as it is now moving to the thematic committee stage, then for drafting, before being taken to parliament.

After this process, a referendum will be held, and if approved, the new constitution would be returned to parliament for ratification.

This process alone, informed sources revealed, meant that a credible election could only be held at the end of next year.

Previously Mugabe had warned that he would call for elections “with or without” the new constitution.

MDC vice-president, Edwin Mushoriwa, said with the roadmap complete, the parties now had to work on the given timeframes.

“There are milestones that have to be achieved before the holding of elections,” he said. “The Sadc troika has already advised that elections could not be held before these targets were met.”

Mushoriwa, who was standing in for the imprisoned Moses Mzila-Ndlovu as a negotiator, said however, the different political party leaders had to assent to the roadmap before it could be binding.

Presently, the negotiators are reviewing the GPA and among the thorny issues are missed deadlines, with the political parties having been told to deal with outstanding issues swiftly.

A summit to deal with Zimbabwe and Madagascar is set to be held in Namibia in May and regional leaders had advised that a roadmap had to be ready before that meeting.

Zanu PF negotiator, Patrick Chinamasa told state media last week that the blueprint had been signed and would be sent to the principals.

“The report identifies activities that had to be undertaken before elections are held.

“These are the lifting of sanctions, completion of the constitution-making process and enactment of amendments to the Electoral Act.

“Those are some of the critical issues,” he said.

However, there were some sticking points that would be addressed by the South African facilitation team in the first week of May.

These included state sponsored political violence and the invitation of international election observers and monitors for elections when they are held.

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