WESTERN think tanks and financiers are behind MDC-T’s plans to violate the Electoral Act by announcing contrived results ahead of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission with a view to drive supporters into the streets for premature celebrations to set the stage for running battles when ZEC announces contrary results.
This — sources close to developments say — is designed to set the stage for Egypt-style uprisings.
“This is why the party held its last rally at that open space close to the Showground which they christened Freedom Square, to evoke images of Egypt’s Tahrir Square,’’ said the source.
Pursuant to this, MDC-T has since enlisted the services of a computer expert to manipulate results from various polling stations using money from the US think tank International Republican Institute (IRI) and the George Soros-funded Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa (OSISA).
Documents in our possession indicate that the MDC-T, through its election directorate guised as the Election Resource Centre (ERC), secured a budget of more than $12 million dollars for the purchase of a software called Elections Results Collection and Management Systems (ERCMS) from a South African registered company, Expertious Technologies fronted by a Zimbabwean, one Oswald Jumira.
The use of the software, which was tried and failed in Ghana, is the basis on which the party’s president Mr Morgan Tsvangirai has been bragging about his ability to announce election results before the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) officially publishes the poll results.
According to a document prepared for the party by Jumira, the “ERCMS is composed of the mobile data collection, database and server infrastructure and the web based interface/console for data management”.
Jumira further explains that “the structured data collection applications are loaded on the mobile device for data collectors to enter the election results in real-time.”
Jumira, who was paid $133 950.00 just to make demonstrations on how the system works, has been working with the MDC-T, OSISA and Mr Trevor Ncube’s Mail & Guardian newspaper to enable the MDC-T collect, collate and manipulate election results from polling stations for the purposes of unofficially announcing them using the Mail & Guardian and Google Southern Africa before the official results are announced by ZEC.
The Mail & Guardian and Google Southern Africa have assembled a team to coordinate the illegal publication of results of the Zimbabwean election.
The team comprises three Zimbabweans, Fortune Sibanda (Manager Policy and Government Relations, Google Southern Africa), Teldah Mawarire (Mail & Guardian) and Tawanda Chimhini (Director ERC).
The other team members are Kwaku Ofori, (Ghanaian and Manager Platform Engineering), Adrian Ephraim (South Africa and Mail & Guardian Online News Editor) and Alistair Fairweather (South African and Mail & Guardian Digital Operations Manager).
Sources within the MDC-T have indicated that the ERCMS relies on feeds from 1960 ward-based roving observers using motorcycles, initially apprehended by police, to move to areas with mobile cellular phone connectivity for transmission of results to cell number 0776 738 194 which then feeds into a server that uses ERCMS to collate the results before they are published on the Mail & Guardian newspaper and Google Southern Africa.
The move, which sources say is “part of the MDC-T strategy of ‘defending’ the vote” is designed to feed manipulated results which portray an MDC-T lead in the presidential poll with the hope that this drive MDC-T supporters into the streets celebrating so that by the time the official results come out, there would be hordes of people who would resist any official result against their party.
This, the sources allege, was meant to poison the environment and prepare party supporters for some Arab-style revolts.
The party’s incessant claims of alleged rigged, the sources said, were meant subliminally prepare supporters to refuse to accept the officials.
Efforts to get comment from the party leadership were fruitless last night as their phones went unanswered.