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Mliswa Cries Foul Over SADC Mission Snub

Outspoken independent Norton legislator Temba Mliswa has expressed disappointment after being overlooked by the SADC Electoral Advisory Council Pre-Election Assessment Mission recently in the country meeting various political actors.

The council was assessing the electoral environment ahead of this year’s harmonized elections. However, Mliswa felt let down after the regional bloc met with other political parties and members of the civic society organisations.

In a tweet, Mliswa said it was disturbing that the council met with new players on the political scene with no representation in Parliament while overlooking him in his capacity as an independent member of Parliament.

“These inquiries lose value even before the findings have been released because there is no fairness in their conduct. The SADC Electoral Advisory Council Pre-Election Assessment Mission has been in the country and the people it has met& not met create doubt on the objective. A plethora of parties have been met and yet as an independent MP I have not been able to proffer my own views.

“What is more disturbing is that they have given the audience to new parties such as DUZ which has no single member in Parliament while overlooking someone who is there! While I respect their decision to engage DUZ what is the rationale behind ignoring the independent politicians? It has zero Parliamentary members, yet I have contested against these political parties and won. It hasn’t even done that!” Mliswa said

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Mliswa also raised concerns about the structure of the inquiry, saying the council ought to have consulted all stakeholders.

“Yet, when debate about the electoral issues come up you only listen to the parties and ignore the independents. It boggles the mind what you intend to get from such a party while ignoring those who have been using the system and can objectively inform about the pros and cons.  No single party can win an election using only its membership. They all need independent support which makes that demography the actual majority. As the only independent candidate I’m the nearest candidate to being their representative. Whose voice is advancing their views?

“We shouldn’t have a scenario where an inquiry is structured specifically to come up with a preconceived set of findings. If you want the truth and reality then engage all relevant and representative players. It is such actions which make people skeptical about the diligence& impartiality of SADC as a regional body. How it consistently operates with suspicious intents. Is this a willful ploy to deny truth an audience?” charged Mliswa

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