The violence that followed the election has created a inimical & febrile environment.
MDC spokesman Morgan Komichi denounced the vote count as “fake” as he took to the stage at the ZEC results centre before being removed by police.After Mnangagwa was declared the winner, he told AFP that his party rejected the outcome. “We will take this to the courts,” he said. With all 10 provinces declared, Mnangagwa won 50.8 per cent of votes to 44.3 per cent for opposition leader Nelson Chamisa of MDC party.
Zimbabwe Electoral Commission declared ZANU-PF party’s Mnangagwa, a duly declared elected president. Mnangagwa needed over 50 per cent of the vote to secure victory without a second-round run-off. Meanwhile the opposition has rejected the results. The chairman of Chamisa’s MDC Alliance said the count could not be verified and moments before the official announcement, it’s spokesman denounced the results as fake.
Zimbabwe’s opposition leader Nelson Chamisa has rejected President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s election victory as fraudulent, saying he will pursue legal and constitutional means to challenge the result.
His comments on Friday came as Mnangagwa denied the opposition claims, hailing “a free, fair and credible election”.
Chamisa, of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) Alliance, came in second, at 44.3 percent.
“We are not accepting fake results. We are not accepting this fiction. We want a proper result to be announced,” Chamisa told reporters in the capital, Harare, on Friday.
“We will pursue all means necessary – legal and constitutional – to make sure that we protect the people’s vote,” he added.
Police and army were on the streets of Harare overnight, but there were no reported protests and few public celebrations when the results were announced after midnight.
Turnout was high at over 80 percent in most of the country’s 10 provinces.
“What they have been trying to do of late is to play around,” Chamisa told reporters hours before the final results.
“That is rigging, that is manipulation, trying to bastardise the result, and that we will not allow.”
On Thursday, the army had guarded ZANU-PF headquarters, while armoured personnel carriers, water cannon trucks and police anti-riot vans took position outside MDC headquarters.
Monday’s vote was meant to turn the page on years of brutal repression under Mugabe, end Zimbabwe’s international isolation and attract foreign investment to revive the shattered economy. Mnangagwa had promised a free and fair vote after the military ushered him to power when Mugabe was forced to resign in November. In the parliamentary election, also held on Monday, ZANU-PF won easily.
Before the violence, European Union observers declared they found an “un-level playing field and lack of trust” in the election process.
Election observers from the Commonwealth issued a statement after Wednesday’s clashes to “denounce the excessive use of force against unarmed civilians”.
Mnangagwa, a former spy chief and a ZANU-PF veteran, denounced the opposition claim that the vote was rigged.
“We won the election freely and fairly, and have nothing to hide or fear. Anyone is free to address the media at any time,” Mnangagwa wrote on Twitter.
South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa congratulated Mnangagwa on his victory and urged Zimbabweans to accept the poll results.
“We urge the people of Zimbabwe to accept the outcome of the election, or follow the legal route should they wish to challenge it,” Ramaphosa said on Twitter on Friday.
On Thursday, the United Nations called on both the ruling party and the main opposition to “exercise restraint” following the landmark poll.