Robert Mugabe 224.88.
(photo credit: AP)
An aide to Zimbabwean opposition leader Simba Makoni alleged ahead of Saturday's election that the Mossad had been hired by President Robert Mugabe to ensure he won by computerized rigging of the vote.
Ibbo Mandaza, a senior member of Makoni's campaign team, told the Mail & Guardian that the voters' roll had been manipulated to favor the ruling ZANU-PF and that the format of the voter's roll was devised by the Mossad on instructions from the Zimbabwean government.
Information technology expert Valentine Sinemane told the South African newspaper that the electronic version of the voters' roll, sold to the opposition by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission for $2,400, was compiled by an Israeli company named Nirkuv Projects.
Mandaza said that ZANU-PF asked for Mossad help because of the intelligence agency's experience with elections in other countries.
"They have expertise in vote-rigging. Also, Mossad is looking for any kind of support and alliances and therefore Zimbabwe is the obvious target," he said.
He said that the opposition was aware that Mossad had been active in Zimbabwe over the past six months and that two weeks ago, six Mossad agents arrived in Harare and held top-secret meetings with government officials involved in state security.
There was no comment from Israeli officials.
Meanwhile, the dwindling Jewish community of Zimbabwe expressed pessimism about the future in the country.
There are an estimated 300 Jews left in Zimbabwe, most of them living in Harare and Bulawayo, and many of them elderly. At its peak in the 1960s, the community numbered about 7,500.
"Many senior community members find it increasingly difficult to make ends meet," Clive Posen, a community leader and industrial psychologist, told The Forward.