ZIMBABWE: POLITICS/SABANEWS/6/8/18 SABANews 1
HARARE – ZIMBABWE remains unsure of the future as opposition MDC ALLIANCE Leader NELSON CHAMISA continues to reject what have generally passed as credible elections.
Soldiers have shot and killed at least SIX people following a violent protest by his supporters, who took to the streets of the capital, HARARE, on WEDNESDAY while the vote counting was still going on.
Mr CHAMISA has publicly disowned the aggressive protestors, although the MDC ALLIANCE lawyer is representing the 27 people arrested for the violent demonstration.
He accuses the Electoral Commission of stealing the vote for the ruling ZANU PF Party and its Leader, President-Elect EMMERSON DAMBUDZO MNANGWA, on 30 JULY but has failed to produce any evidence so far.
Political commentators say the actions of Mr CHAMISA suggest he wants to force ZANU PF into a unity government in which his party will have representatives, because his rejection of results started even way before the general polls.
However, President-elect MNANGAGWA has told SKY-NEWS of BRITAIN there is no need for him to follow such a path, given the comfortable TWO-THIRDS majority ZANU PF enjoys in the National Assembly.
The Electoral Commission has declared him winner of the WEDNESDAY ballot, in which he scored 50-POINT-EIGHT percent of the votes against 44-POINT-THREE percent of Mr CHAMISA.
President-elect MNANGAGWA says the opposition have the Constitutional right to approach the law if they disagree with his victory, but he has called on Mr CHAMISA to help build a peaceful environment for the country to move forward.
Mr CHAMISA maintains he will not accept the vote outcome but will use all legal means to rule the SADC country, calling on his supporters to avoid violence while he fights for what he describes as his stolen presidency.
His comments come amid international calls for all political leaders in the economically battered ZIMBABWE to be noble in victory and civil in defeat.
The AFRICAN UNION, the COMESA, the SADC Electoral Observer Mission, CHINA, and a number of other members of the global community have congratulated the country for the successful ballots.
The Chairperson of the SADC Organ on Politics, Defence, and Security Cooperation, President JOAO LOURENCO of ANGOLA, has commended voters for conducting themselves in an exemplary manner.
On the other hand, media reports quote AMERICAN State Department Spokesperson HEATHER NAUERT says parties not happy with the electoral outcome should seek legal recourse and avoid violence at all costs.
She has issued a statement saying the UNITED STATES is ready to work with the authorities in ZIMBABWE as they struggle to bring about reforms.
Ms NAUERT, a former AMERICAN journalist, says the 30 JULY elections give the country a historic chance to move beyond the political and economic crises of the past and toward profound democratic change.
She says voters turned out massively to cast their ballots and the authorities managed to deliver a peaceful election day, open to international observers.
Nevertheless, Ms NAUERT says, unfortunately, the process later witnessed what she describes as violence and a disproportionate use of deadly force against protestors by the security forces.
Across the LIMPOPO River in neighbouring SOUTH AFRICA the opposition ECONOMIC FREEDOM FIGHTERS Party Leader JULIUS MALEMA has also called on Mr CHAMISA to accept defeat and allow the country to move forward.
He says SOUTH AFRICANS would have liked Mr CHAMISA to win the polls, but the people of ZIMBABWE have spoken and politicians should listen.
Back home, the State-run SUNDAY MAIL newspaper says a senior and founding member of the MDC-ALLIANCE has dismissed the claims by Mr CHAMISA.
EDDIE CROSS says any challenge against the victory of President-elect MNANGAGWA will be short-lived, because the incoming Head of State campaigned to win a free and fair election – to break with the controversies of the ROBERT MUGABE era.
The ZIMBABWEAN opposition leader has SEVEN days to lodge his case in court, while the swearing-in of President-elect MNANGAGWA will take place within NINE days after announcement of the 30 JULY election results./Sabanews/cam