THE SADC and AU observer missions on Friday endorsed Zimbabwe’s presidential and parliamentary elections as ‘free and peaceful’ despite some logistical challenges that affected the special vote process and the late availability of the voters’ roll.
Report by Hazel Ndebele
Sadc Observer Mission head and Tanzania Foreign minister Bernard Membe said “Zimbabwe should be congratulated for holding a free and peaceful harmonised election”.
The mission however noted that “there were logistical challenges that made it impossible for 26 160 out of a total 65 956 registered members of the disciplined forces and electoral officers to cast their vote”.
“We further call all political parties to respect and accept the election results as will be announced by the constitutionally mandated Zec. Whoever is aggrieved with the results, should not resort to violence, but rather should go to the court of law, or engage in dialogue,” Membe said.
AU mission head Olusegun Obasanjo earlier in the day said the elections were “free, honest and credible”.
The two largest observation mission endorsements of the elections further dampens Prime-minister Morgan Tsvangirai and MDC-T’s rejection of the poll as a “huge farce”. Tsvangirai told reporters on Thursday the elections were “null and void”, alleging the poll had been rigged.
President Robert Mugabe and Zanu PF are leading in the partial results so far released and projections are showing that that Mugabe is heading towards a landslide win.
Analysts are projecting a two thirds majority for Zanu PF in the National Assembly.