Zimbabwe

SA says 'challenges' in Zimbabwe vote

2013-07-19 20:41
Supporters welcome their leader President Robert Mugabe, seen on poster at rear, during a campaign rally in Chitungiwiza, Zimbabwe, about 20km south of Harare. (Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi, AP)

Supporters welcome their leader President Robert Mugabe, seen on poster at rear, during a campaign rally in Chitungiwiza, Zimbabwe, about 20km south of Harare. (Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Special Report

Harare - South Africa's chief envoy on Zimbabwe's political crisis conceded on Friday there were challenges in the run-up to key polls, a day before regional mediators meet to discuss the vote.

Yet the African Union said free and fair elections in Zimbabwe, due at the end of the month, are possible.

Thousands of Zimbabwean security forces could not draw their mark in chaotic early voting three weeks before the 31 July elections to end a four-year unity government.

"The process has got challenges, we can't deny that because we've seen what info has been coming out during the special vote," said Lindiwe Zulu, who heads the mediation process after deadly polls in 2008.

During early voting on Sunday and Monday polling stations opened late and many lacked indelible ink, stamps, voter rolls and ballot papers and boxes.

"If things didn't go right in the special vote, those things need to be looked into by the time of elections on 31 July," Zulu told AFP.

But the African Union after its Peace and Security Council meeting on Friday said it was possible to have fair elections.

"According to our observers on the ground we believe that it is possible to have free and fair elections in Zimbabwe," said Aisha Abdullahi, AU commissioner for political affairs on Zimbabwe.

"But we cannot guarantee that it will be the most perfect or optimum of situations," he said after an AU peace and security council meeting.

"The environment in Zimbabwe so far reassures us that the conditions are good for the election to be held on 31 July," he said.

Election commission not up to task

President Robert Mugabe called early polls, hoping to prolong his 33 years in power, despite demands for reform by his arch rival Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai.

But Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) said this week's "disorganised" early vote showed the country's election commission was not up to the task.

With the vote due in less than two weeks, the country is still trying to raise the $132m budget required to fund it.

"We are doing everything we can to make sure that we have the sufficient resources to fund the elections," Finance Minister Tendai Biti told journalists.

"I am very positive that we will get the money," admitting that "we do not have the resources at the present moment".

Biti, who is a member of Tsvangirai's party, had previously declared that the country had no money to fund the crucial elections, and launching an international appeal for finance.

In April, the cash-strapped country withdrew its funding appeal to the United Nations.

200 opposition killed

Early this year the government had to borrow money from local firms to pay for the referendum on a new constitution.

"We are getting no joy from diamond monies. Over $400m have been sold of diamonds just in the first quarter of the year, [but] nothing has come to treasury," said Biti.

Leaders of regional mediator the Southern African Development Community (SADC) will meet in South Africa on Saturday to discuss the upcoming elections.

The 15-member block brokered the power-sharing deal between Mugabe and Tsvangirai in 2009, a year after around 200 opposition members were killed in election-related violence.

But there is no love lost between Mugabe and the SADC at the moment.

He threatened to leave the bloc if it meddled in Zimbabwean affairs and scolded South Africa's top diplomat "stupid and idiotic" in an election rally earlier July.

- AFP

Read more on:    sadc  |  zimbabwe  |  southern africa  |  zimbabwe election 2013

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
29 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Tuesday Century City - 05:58 AM
    Road name: Ratanga Road Southbound
    ROADWORKS - lane closure between Ocean Spirit Avenue and Century Boulevard (until mid April)
  • Tuesday Mitchells Plain - 05:58 AM
    Road name: Spine Road
    ROAD CLOSED between Weltevreden Drive and Seafarer Drive due to roadworks (until mid April)
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Mother’s Day special offers!

Spoil mom with these awesome specials that will warm her heart. Shop now!

Twisp – the smoking alternative

Buy any 2 refills for R250 and save R149. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Mother’s Day specials on appliances

Browse our range of Mother’s Day appliances to spoil and pamper mom. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

BlackBerry Bold 9790

Bold Design The BlackBerry Bold 9790 smartphone combines the iconic BlackBerry...

From R2979.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Treat yourself to something beautiful. You tend to put so much energy in making everything around you work harmoniously, and...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.