June 14, 2024

Zimbabwe’s Emmerson Mnangagwa wins second term

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Zimbabwe‘s President Emmerson Mnangagwa wins a second term in office, election officials said Saturday, but the opposition rejected the result of a vote that international observers said fell short of democratic standards.

Mnangagwa, 80, won 52.6 percent of the ballots against 44 percent for the main challenger, Nelson Chamisa, 45, according to official results announced by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC).

“Mnangagwa Emmerson Dambudzo of the ZANU-PF party is declared duly elected president of the Republic of Zimbabwe,” ZEC chairwoman Justice Chigumba told journalists.

Zimbabweans went to the ballot box to elect the president and legislature on Wednesday and Thursday in polling marred by delays that sparked opposition accusations of rigging and voter suppression.

But Promise Mkwananzi, a spokesman for Chamisa’s Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC), said the party did not sign the final tally, which he described as “false”.

“We cannot accept the results,” he told AFP, adding the party would soon announce its next move.

The presidential results were welcomed by the celebratory cheers of a few ruling party supporters at the news conference venue.

The vote was being watched across southern Africa as a test of support for Mnangagwa’s ZANU-PF, whose 43-year rule has been battered by a moribund economy and charges of authoritarianism.

Observer missions from the European Union, Commonwealth, and the 16-nation Southern African Development Community (SADC) listed a number of concerns, including the banning of opposition rallies, issues with the voters’ roll, biased state media coverage, and voter intimidation.

written by @enock katamba

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