Southern African leaders back re-election of Zimbabwe’s Mugabe

via – Southern African leaders back re-election of Zimbabwe’s Mugabe

By Mabvuto Banda

LILONGWE (Reuters) – Southern African leaders on Sunday endorsed the re-election of veteran President Robert Mugabe, brushing aside a campaign from Zimbabwe’s opposition MDC who said the vote July was rigged and its results should be overturned.

The decision by the 15-nation Southern African Development Community (SADC), which helped broker a power-sharing deal after disputed elections in 2008, clears the way for Mugabe, 89, to be sworn as early as this week for a fresh five-year term.

“The summit congratulated his honorable Robert Mugabe for winning the election in Zimbabwe,” a South African foreign ministry official said.

At its meeting in Malawi’s capital Lilongwe, the group also named Mugabe, Africa’s oldest leader, as its deputy chairman and said it would hold a summit next year in Zimbabwe’s capital.

Unlike the SADC and the African Union observer missions, which broadly endorsed the vote, the preliminary assessment by the leading domestic observers’ body called the election “seriously compromised”.

The Zimbabwe Election Support Network (ZESN) said registration flaws may have disenfranchised up to a million people out of 6.4 million registered voters.

“We were not expecting SADC to immediately tell Mugabe to call fresh elections, but we are going to continue lobbying, while at home we apply various forms of political pressure to achieve democracy,” a spokesman for Zimbabwe’s opposition Movement for Democratic Change, Douglas Mwonzora, told Reuters.

The MDC on Friday withdrew a court challenge against the re-election, saying it would not get a fair hearing. It sent delegates to Lilongwe to raise its objections.

Lawyers said the Constitutional Court was expected on Monday to formally accept the MDC’s withdrawal application, paving the way for Mugabe to be sworn in for a new five-year term.

Under the constitution, a president has to be sworn in within 48 hours of the constitutional court decision.

Political analysts said outgoing Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai has been careful not to speak about street protests, fearing a crackdown on his MDC leadership by Mugabe’s security forces.

Former colonial power Britain had urged SADC to look carefully at accusations of fraud in last month’s poll and said it was disappointed opposition parties had withdrawn its legal challenge.

Britain, the United States and the European Union have imposed sanctions against Mugabe and senior ZANU-PF leaders for human rights violations and suspected vote rigging and suspected rigging of previous elections.

(Writing by Jon Herskovitz; Additional reporting by Cris Chinaka in Harare and Stephen Addison in London; Editing by Jon Boyle)



  • comment-avatar

    Hokay so says these clowns…we are watching and I don’t knw were your circus ride will end but history has already been written with your silly actions. Know this that one day its going to be your turn…probably not you but your kids and we will just ululate as a dictator is endorsed in your countries.

  • comment-avatar
    Rudadiso 9 years ago

    A disgaracefu bunch of half wits.

  • comment-avatar

    “What the wicked dreads will overtake him; what the righteous desire will be granted.” Proverbs 10:24…. “Righteous” means those who are in right standing with the Lord.”…..

    Come on Zimbabwe, let’s believe what God is saying, take courage, lift up your heads for your redemption is near….. all things are in My timing…. do not grow weary in doing good…. for in due season , I will make all things beautiful. Watch and see what the Lord shall do… he has heard the cries of the oppressed… who is God that He should be mocked? Take courage Zimbabwe, take courage! As you call on My name, watch and see how I will act speedily on your behalf…. I love you my country x x x

  • comment-avatar
    Mike Patterson 9 years ago

    Same circus same clowns!