via Business as usual as MPs sworn-in | The Zimbabwean by Adrian Mutigwe
It was business as usual in Harare today despite the swearing in ceremony of just under 400 legislators for the country’s 8th Parliament in both the upper and lower houses.
President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF which won two thirds of a disputed election a month ago once again failed to galvanise the Zimbabwean capital’s mood still trying to come to terms with a poll result most citizens say they do not know where it came from.
A couple of hundred slogan chanting and swaying Zanu PF supporters singing liberation war songs tried in vain to create a festive atmosphere but for most people it was business as usual.
“Well, there is nothing to celebrate and you can read the mood yourself. This is a non-event if you ask me,” Tichaona Munda, a vendor along Nelson Mandela Avenue a few meters from Parliament building.
Tecla Musipa, an office worker who was passing by said, “Zimbabweans are tired of this madness. We had expected SADC to deliver a more people centered verdict on the elections.
“How can they (SADC) pass the elections as representing the will of the people when the same organization cannot say whether the elections were free or fair? It is disheartening really,” she said.
However a Zanu PF activist in flowing party apparel who refused to be identified claimed Zimbabweans across the divide have welcomed the demise of the MDCs.
“Zimbabweans do not want this MDC nonsense that is why they voted for Mugabe and his troops. We are in (tapinda). We celebrate in our own way and that does not mean coming here in thousands. [People did not have transport money and food. Normally we have these that is why you see so few people,” he said.
Mugabe won 61 per-cent of the vote in the July poll beating arch-foe outgoing Prime Minister and MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai who garnered 43 per-cent of the Presidential poll. Mugabe’s Zanu PF in power since majority rule from Britain 33 years ago also swept 160 of the 210 seats on offer in the lower house giving the nonagenarian Zimbabwean strongman unfettered power he had lost in 2008.
Tsvangirai has disputed the poll outcome calling it a “monumental fraud” and calling for fresh election before year-end.
Regional power block SADC had endorsed the poll despite refusing to pass the elections as fair and giving a qualified grade on the credibility of the poll.
Western countries led by Britain and the USA have refused to endorse the poll outcome and called for an audit while regionally western neighbor Botswana has stuck out as a sore finger coming short of calling for a fresh election.