Briefing Document / July 26, 2013

Zimbabwe’s elections: intimidation, vote-rigging and diamonds


Global Witness has grave concerns about Zimbabwe’s elections, scheduled to take place on July 31st. The elections, which should mark Zimbabwe’s transition to a more free and fair democracy, look instead to bear the hallmarks of previous flawed votes. Much needed reforms set out in Zimbabwe’s constitution have not been undertaken, most notably a clean-up of the electoral roll and security sector reforms. Intimidation of voters and civil society members has increased throughout the year and accusations of election-rigging by Mugabe’s ZANU PF party are more and more frequent. Global Witness is particularly concerned about the impact that diamond money may be having on the electoral process and outcome. There are credible indications that diamond revenues could be a source of off-budget cash for ZANU PF and partisan security forces and may therefore be funding anti-democratic tactics being employed by Mugabe’s party.