Political Parties and the Democratisation Process in Zimbabwe

“The report begins by observing that parties have historically played a pivotal role in governance by aggregating diverse demands into political programmes that they translate into collective action through elections and legitimate control of political office. As key players during elections, parties advertise competing platforms and seek to convince potential voters that they are the most eligible to govern a country. The report observes that in the Zimbabwean context parties have been central players in internationalist / liberation struggles, as well as in post-independence politics and governance. The report begins by analyzing the historical background and contemporary programmes of 5 of the parties that exist in Zimbabwe. The report then outlines distinct phases in the development of the party system in Zimbabwe, namely: an early variety of the competitive party system at independence, followed by a dominant party system in the 1990’s that preceded a more competitive two-party system in 2000. The report goes on to describe the requirements for the formal nomination of party candidates for election, as well as the relationship between parties and election management bodies.”