Zimbabwe's Chamisa challenges election result; inauguration halted

Zimbabwe's Chamisa challenges election result; inauguration halted

Cheryl Sanders
August 11, 2018

Zimbabwe's main opposition leader, Nelson Chamisa, filed a court challenge on Friday against President Emmerson Mnangagwa's election victory, halting Mnangagwa's planned Sunday inauguration.

Analysts say that the legal challenge has little chance of success given the courts' historic tilt towards ZANU-PF, which has ruled since independence from British colonial rule in 1980.

Mr Chamisa tweeted: "Our legal team successfully filed our court papers".

"Mr Biti is in good condition and we will follow the case closely".

However, the polls were not without controversy and were marred by violent scenes as MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa publicly rejected the outcome, criticising what he said was lack of transparency from the ZEC.

Addressing Zanu-PF winning legislators at the party's headquarters in Harare yesterday, Mnangagwa stated that some long serving members of his Government would be deployed to work full time at party level.

"We've managed to place before the court forms that show the (results) figures were erased", MDC party lawyer Thabani Mpofu told reporters.

The outspoken politician was further barred from making any public political statement and to report twice a day at CID law and order division until the court ruled otherwise.

They may now need to send apologies just in case someone turns up.

The first election since Robert Mugabe was forced to resign after a coup in November had been expected to end Zimbabwe's pariah status and launch an economic recovery but post-election unrest has reminded the country of its violent past.

European Union observers said that the ZANU-PF candidate had benefitted from an "un-level playing field" and some voter intimidation, though worldwide monitors largely praised the conduct of the election.

On August 1, soldiers opened fire on MDC protesters, killing six people and sparking an global outcry.

Zimbabwe's defeated opposition faced a deadline Friday to file its legal challenge to try to overturn the July 30 election result, which has been mired in fraud allegations and a government crackdown on opponents.

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