Source: Govt compiles poll observers’ list | The Herald 28 FEB, 2018
Felex Share Senior Reporter
Government is compiling a list of election observer missions which will monitor this year’s harmonised elections, Foreign Affairs and International Trade secretary Ambassador Joey Bimha said yesterday.
Ambassador Bimha said invitations to foreign observer missions will be sent soon.
“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (and International Trade) is responsible for compiling the list of all those to be invited to observe the elections,” he said.
“As such, the Ministry is working on it. Once that list is completed and approved by the President, we will then send the invitations. We are seized with the issue and working on the necessary processes before we invited them.”
Ambassador Bimha’s comments come after European Union head of Delegation Philippe Van Damme this week said Government was yet to invite the bloc for the polls.
Mr Van Damme said the EU wanted to send exploration missions now if the bloc was to be part of this year’s election observer missions.
President Mnangagwa has stated that the United Nations (UN) and the European Union (EU) were welcome to monitor the elections.
He has on several occasions reiterated that Zimbabwe will hold free, fair and peaceful elections.
“We want fair, free and credible elections,” said President Mnangagwa. “In the past, those who had pronounced themselves against us; who pre-determined that our elections would not be free and fair, were not allowed to come in.
“But now, with this new dispensation, I don’t feel threatened by anything. I would want the United Nations to come, the EU should come. If the Commonwealth were requesting to come, I am disposed to consider their application.”
The Head of State and Government said violence will have no place before, during and after the polls.
“We have to preach peace, peace and peace, because we know it is good for us and we have no doubt that we will have peaceful elections,” he said. “I assure the regional leadership that the forthcoming harmonised polls will embrace the tenets of democracy, fair play and standards set by us in the Sadc.
“We will ensure that Zimbabwe delivers free, credible, fair and indisputable elections to ensure Zimbabwe engages the world as a qualified democratic State.”
President Mnangagwa has expressed confidence that the ruling party, Zanu-PF, will romp to victory, as it is the only party in touch with the needs and aspirations of the people.