Zimbabwe Inauguration on Hold as Opposition Petition in Courts

In Zimbabwe, plans to inaugurate President Mnangagwa yesterday were brought to a halt following the submission of a petition to the Constitutional Court contesting the declared results by the opposition MDC-Alliance.

The inauguration will now be on hold until the court rules on the petition. In accordance with the constitution they have 14 days to do so.

The petition challenges the validity of the declared results and presents various examples and items of evidence in this respect, including with regards to the tallying of results. As President Mnangagwa was declared the winner with 50.8% of the votes, he only narrowly avoided a second round and thus the court must determine whether the evidence indicates that the outcome was sufficiently distorted such that a second round should have followed.

The opposition, as well as some observers, have also raised a number of concerns with regards to the pre-election environment during which various forms of intimidation were reported. There has been widespread condemnation of the heavy handed response by state security forces to protests following the election that resulted in the deaths of at least six Zimbabweans, as well as the pursuit of opposition politicians.

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