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Zim polls: SADC 'must revise report'

08 August 2013, 13:46

Cape Town - United States-based non-governmental organisation Freedom House has called upon member states of SADC to revise their preliminary statements and acknowledge flaws in Zimbabwe's election process, a News Day report said on Thursday.

In a statement, the organisation said SADC needed to immediately halt any actions or statements that would legitimise the Zanu-PF government until a genuinely independent investigation was conducted into electoral irregularities.

"These elections were plagued with voters' roll manipulation and widespread intimidation from the ruling Zanu-PF and were, therefore, neither free nor fair," reads the statement.

"Local NGOs noted systematic disenfranchisement during the election process, with significantly more voters being turned away in urban strongholds of the opposition MDC than in rural Zanu-PF strongholds."

This development comes as a growing number of SADC states sent President Robert Mugabe congratulatory messages over his re-election last week.

SADC and the African Union (AU) observer missions have already lauded the vote as free and credible, although they did not describe it as fair.

Ironically, in a poll last year, Freedom House projected a victory for Mugabe.

- News24


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