THE opposition Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) has described the swearing in of President Emmerson Mnangagwa to serve a second term yesterday as a non-event, maintaining that he was declared the winner in a sham election.
Mnangagwa was declared winner by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) with a 52,6% vote but the CCC led by Nelson Chamisa rejected the August 23 and 24 poll results.
Chamisa, who according to Zec polled 44% of the presidential vote, is pushing for a fresh election monitored by the Southern Africa Development Community (Sadc) and the African Union (AU).
Party spokesperson Promise Mkwananzi told NewsDay yesterday that Mnangagwa’s inauguration was insignificant.
“The push for fresh elections is in full swing. The region knows the truth about what happened. There was no election, and Mnangagwa's inauguration is a total nullity. We will continue to exert political and diplomatic pressure to bring forth a fresh election,” he said.
“Citizens must remain calm, peaceful and vigilant. They should not lose hope. We will do everything we can to make sure that their vote counts and is respected.”
Political analyst Kudakwashe Munemo said Zimbabwe was thrown into an election crisis on August 23.
Self-exiled former Cabinet minister Saviour Kasukuwere, who was barred by the courts from contesting as an independent presidential candidate, is also of the view that another election to be monitored by Sadc and AU should be held.
- Young vocalist making southern Africa dance
- Chamisa party defiant after ban
- Village Rhapsody: How Zimbabwe can improve governance
- News in depth: Partisan police force persecutes opposition, shields Zanu PF rogue elements
“In short, we didn’t have an election, honestly speaking. Clearly, we didn’t have an election," Kasukuwere said during an election post-mortem discussion hosted by the Southern Africa Political Economy Series Trust last week.
"It is unfortunate because the whole world was looking forward to a free, fair and credible election for us to continue with re-engagement processes. This was so central. What we are having today is a slap in our face. It’s an embarrassment; it’s an indictment. Are we unable to run elections on our own?
“No. We failed; hence, there is a clarion call that we need an election that is supported and monitored by Sadc and AU. Once we get that certified, it allows Zimbabwe to get out of this deep situation. We can’t continue in this situation.”
However, Democratic Union of Zimbabwe president Robert Chapman said the CCC was crying over spilt milk.
“There was some inevitability that was going to be there. The question is: do we have enough documentation to present from different delegations to sway Zimbabwe to go back and redo its election? Do we have this to support that claim?” Chapman asked
“If the answer is no, we are going to see the same thing that we saw in 2018, which was a much closer and tighter election. We were not really ready to go into this election.”
He also accused opposition parties of being unprepared for the elections.
“The problem of misinformation came from the opposition saying we were prepared. I remember one saying we were ready for elections. That created this problem, which is where we are right now. I sensed that we would be right here with a contested election, which is unfortunate,” he said.
University of London professor of politics Stephen Chan said: “The opposition should present itself as a government in waiting and do a fundamental rethinking of its strategy. Zanu PF should not be too proud of its strategy because it has lost respect for the country, and a very great question arises: the legitimacy of the government of Zimbabwe.”