Build Zimbabwe Alliance leader Noah Manyika has said that contrary to reports in state media, the tour to watch the printing of ballot papers did not go off as expected. Manyika echoed statements made by the MDC Alliance that the political parties were denied access to view the actual printing process.
We publish Manyika’s statement in full below:
STATEMENT BY DR. NOAH MANYIKA ON PARTY INSPECTION OF BALLOT PRINTING PAPER
On Friday, June 1, 2018, a member of our Executive Committee joined representatives of other political parties, ZEC and representatives from the EU at Fidelity Printers. The meeting started at 10:a.m. with the stated purpose being to allow the party representatives to:
– view the design of presidential ballot (from PC).
– view the actual printing process to finish.
– have a specimen copy of the actual ballot paper being used.
* Party representatives toured the printing area which is heavily protected with glass all over and could only view the printing process from above and from about 10meters away.
* Party representative demanded to be allowed to enter the printing room to view the process at close range but entry was denied by a Mr Moyo (ZEC official). After a harsh exchange of words, there was no further touring and everyone returned to the original point of assembly where questions were being asked.
* Our representative was the last to speak with a suggestion and question. The suggestion was for two representatives to go into the printing room to retrieve at least 10 copies of what had been printed so the representatives could view the paper, serial numbers and type of fonts, and for security reasons tear-off the paper into four pieces and give each political party a specimen copy of the actual ballot. The question our representative asked was: ‘Who is denying party representatives entry into the printing room? Is it ZEC or FIDELITY PRINTERS?” Mr Moyo the ZEC official refused to respond to the question or to take up the suggestion and closed the meeting.
* According to our representative and contrary to reports published in the official press, the general sentiment of party representatives at that point was that the process was null and void and that none of the stated purposes of the tour had been accomplished.
Dr Noah Manyika — President July 5, 2018.