OPPOSITION New Patriotic Front presidential candidate, Joshua Munyanduri, has cried foul over the $1 000 nomination fee demanded by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec), saying it was a rip-off for most candidates from smaller political parties.
Munyanduri made the remarks at the peace pledge signing ceremony in Harare on Tuesday, where he accused Zec of ripping off presidential hopefuls, saying he had to fork out the money from his own pocket.
“Peace means increasing the life expectancy for our children, and those in power should pursue peace options such as the elimination of corruption.
We believe that elections in Zimbabwe cannot be free and fair if a presidential candidate has to pay the nomination fee from their salary, it ceases to be fair,” he said.
In Zambia, nomination fees for presidential candidates are pegged at $2 000.
Recently, there was heated debate following a proposal to raise the fees to $7 500.
Coalition of Democrats leader Elton Mangoma said since independence, Zimbabweans had been victims of State-sponsored violence and that should end.
He said there was need for a truth and reconciliation hearing to deal with the wounds of the Gukurahundi violence, Operation Murambatsvina, the 2008 electoral violence and the 2013 wavhotera papi (who did you vote for) campaign.
Build Zimbabwe Alliance leader Noah Manyika said almost 10 million Zimbabweans were living in abject poverty, with women walking distances of up to 30km to fetch firewood.
Peter Mapfumo Gava, president of the United Democratic Front, urged leaders who signed the peace pledge to commit to end citizens’ suffering.
“It means that in the future, there will be no suffering again for Zimbabweans,” Gava said.