Zimbabweans discover how polls can be run freely

Charles Mabhena

Issa Hayatou who has been at the helm of the Confederation of African Football (CAF) for 29 years has finally been defeated, for Zimbabweans it has been sweet music due to the fact that the country through its son Philip Chiyangwa, had a hand in plotting the downfall of the dictator.

Congratulating Ahmad, Minister of Higher Education Prof Jonathan Moyo was happy that Zimbabwe had a hand in booting out the dictator and he twitted; “History made in African football with our very own Philip Chiyangwa in the thick of it.”

The transparent voting took place in Ethiopia, where each association member was voting secretly before putting the ballot paper in a glass box.

The Zimbabwe Football Association (ZIFA) and Council of Southern Africa Football Associations (Cosafa) president Chiyangwa was the campaign manager for the now CAF president Ahmad Ahmad of Madagascar, the win has left most Zimbabweans in bullish mood, with some even claiming that the country will now be able to host AFCON soon.

Chiyangwa had since assuming high office in Southern African football promised to boot out the dictator Hayatou saying he was too old and there was need for new blood.

Meanwhile, unconfirmed reports are that Hayatou had planned to manipulate the forthcoming match between CAPS United and TP Mazembe had he won as a way to fix Chiyangwa. It is being alleged that Hayatou wanted to pay probably a dodgy referee to make decisions that would screw the match against CAPS as a way to settle personal score with and punish the ZIFA boss.

Anyway, these are some reports going rounds even in the mainstream media at the moment.

Be that as it may, this soccer drama has now spilt off the pitch now, Zimbabweans are discussing how elections can be run freely and fairly giving the fall of the ‘football dictator’ as an example.

Marrion Dzapasara a citizen who has participated in all national polls in Zimbabwe since 1980 says the fall of the soccer dictator should be a wake-up call to political dictators also.

“Hayatou had been manipulating the polls for so long now, I am happy he has finally met his match and he is gone now. I hope this can replicate in Mugabe’s case. It’s only that the master minder in Hayatou’s downfall (Chiyangwa) is Mugabe’s blood relative as such he can’t tell us how he managed to do it,” he says.

One speaker once said; ‘elections should have a predictable process with an unpredictable outcome.’

Renowned political commentator Dr Pedzisai Ruhanya is one such person who is happy that the African football dictator is now gone, he says most electoral democracies lack proper safeguards and hence its practice is always imperfect.