Zimbabwe to hold polls in early 2012 Mugabe says: report

2011-09-03 09:22

President Robert Mugabe said Zimbabwe will hold elections early next year and raised concerns on the delay of the country’s constitutional programme, state-media reported Saturday.

“We cannot go beyond March next year,” Mugabe was quoted as saying by the state-run Herald while addressing his ZANU-PF members.
“I will definitely announce the date.

“Once I announce the date, everyone will follow. I have the constitutional right to name an election date with the GPA (Global Political Agreement) or no GPA.”

Mugabe’s announcement marks a major about-turn for the veteran leader who has previously said elections would be held this year.

Last year, ZANU-PF nominated Mugabe as its party’s candidate for the elections.

He complained that the constitution-making process was being drawn out, accusing the constitutional teams of “dilly-dallying” to delay the polls.

“It appears that those we put in place to manage the process are proceeding at a snail’s pace,” he said. “One wonders whether the delay is genuine or not,” he added.

Zimbabwe’s coalition government parties are still to implement agreed key reforms that will set the pace for elections.

Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and his MDC have demanded real reforms before any vote.

Meanwhile, Mugabe said that he would not allow any reforms to the security sector
.
“The security forces remain what they are. We have one of the best armies in Africa. We fought the struggle here. We helped the struggle in Mozambique, DRC and served the UN peacekeeping missions,” he said.

“If there is any force to be proud of in Africa, it is the Zimbabwe National Army.”

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