Young people from Zimbabwe’s main political parties gathered at a Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES) Southern Region Alumni organised political meeting in Bulawayo where they encouraged each other to vote in the upcoming 2018 elections.
The ruling party Zanu PF’s youth league member Fundisani Dewa, MDCT’s Alfred Dzirutwe, ZAPU’s Iphithule Maphosa and the MDC’s Adrian Moyo all noted that the country’s upcoming polls will be insignificant without the young people’s vote.
Dzirutwe who spoke on behalf of the country’s largest opposition party the MDC-T said youths should be careful of what lies between them and the future and vote the ruling party Zanu PF out of power.
Dzirutwe said young people should be ready to sacrifice their lives if they are to make a difference in the upcoming plebiscite.
“As youths, we are willing to die for democracy as we all know that Zanu of is a very violent party. They have a culture of violence, Youths should be prepared to die for democracy, 2018 is our year” he said.
Zanu PF’s Fundisani Dewa also said that if young people want to make a difference they should be prepared to register and also cast their votes.
“The 2018 elections will not be different from any elections if the young people do not vote. As a league we agree on a candidate and people should not question us why we chose him. He is our winning formula and we cannot change that,” said Dewa.
Iphithule Maphosa the ZAPU spokesperson and representative at the event urged the government to scrap stringent registration requirements such as the need for one to have a proof of residence for them to vote saying this deterred young people.
FES Southern Region Alumni Networking Officer Mlondolozi Ndlovu said their association will continue creating platforms for dialogues in the city so that young people determine the agenda for next year’s elections.
“We are very happy that the people in Bulawayo have accepted our idea to have such progressive platforms. It is our hope that in the spirit of dialogue and inclusivity young people will determine their future and not just be used as mere pawns not only in the 2018 elections but in all political platforms,” said Ndlovu.
The event was attended by youths from civil society organisations and those from across the political divide at the Bulawayo press club.