CHIPINGE – Twenty –three teachers have been arrested here for allegedly prejudicing Robert Mugabe of an undisclosed number of votes in Chipinge Central during the March 29 elections.
The teachers were working for the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) during the controversial polls which the MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai won 47 percent of the vote beating the incumbent, Mugabe who managed 42 percent. The MDC claims it won a bigger percentage.
They were presiding officers at polling stations in the constituency.
The teachers appeared in court today (Wednesday) and were each granted ZW$100 million bail by magistrate Samuel Zuze.
They were arrested last week but were taken to court today (Wednesday).
Chipinge lawyer Langton Mhungu successfully applied for their release on bail.
The electoral officials are alleged to have worked in cohorts with opposition forces during the poll to discount votes cast for Mugabe so as to deny him victory.
They deny the charges.
After the 29 March polls police launched a systematic campaign of arresting polling officials accusing them of conniving with the opposition MDC, Western powers and non-governmental organizations to ensure a Tsvangirai victory.
This is, however, seen as a smokescreen by the ageing Zanu PF leader to divert attention and mislead the world.