The fairness of Zimbabwe’s election is questionable, the Southern African Development Community said Monday, stating that the voters’ roll was distributed by the national electoral commission too late for it to be verified.
“If the voters’ roll isn’t made available on time, the fairness of the election is brought into question,” Bernard Membe, Tanzanian foreign affairs minister and head of the SADC election observer mission, told journalists in the capital Harare.
Overall, however, the polls were “free, peaceful and generally credible,” Membe added.
President Robert Mugabe won Zimbabwe’s July 31 elections with 61% of votes, followed by former prime minister Morgan Tsvangirai with 34%.
Tsvangirai refuses to recognise the outcome, saying his Movement for Democratic Change party received the voters’ roll only on the eve of the elections, which made it impossible to audit the register of 6.4 million people.
After the election results were announced, the MDC challenged Mugabe’s victory, but Zimbabwe’s constitutional court dismissed the case.
Summary statement available from The Zimbabwean