Sunday, 25 August, 2019

Zimbabwe presidential inauguration delayed after court appeal -Minister

Tendai Biti MDC Alliance Spokesperson Tendai Biti. Zambia deported him back to Zimbabwe
Patty Aguilar | 11 August, 2018, 11:58

Mnangagwa's inauguration planned for Sunday was postponed until the court makes its ruling. "There is no inauguration that will take place until the matter is determined by the court".

Essentially what this means is that the nation will be in some of inertia for at most the next two weeks, given that the Constitution allows the court a maximum of 14 days within which it can deal with the matter. The decision, in this case, would be final.

Ordering a recount of the votes, if the applicant has asked for this. "But if they want to meet us in court we have sufficient legal minds to meet them squarely in court".

The MDC alliance party alleges that there were irregulates in the country's first vote since long term leader Robert Mugabe was deposed.

Mr Chamisa wants the court to declare him the victor or call a fresh election, it is reported.

Britain's Minister for Africa Harriett Baldwin said in a statement she had spoken to Chamisa and Zimbabwe's Foreign Minister Sibusiso Moyo to urge calm while the election challenge was being considered by the court.

The MDC Alliance's legal representatives‚ Chris Mhike and Sylvester Hashiti‚ and his chief election agent‚ Jameson Timba‚ arrived at the court about 30 minutes before the courts closed for the end of the day at 4pm to file the papers.

The aftermath of the election has been marred by allegations of a crackdown on opposition members, including beatings and arrests.

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Diplomats and election observers were present at the hearing in Harare after Biti fled to Zambia but was handed back to Zimbabwean police despite claiming asylum.

He faces charges of inciting the protests last week by proclaiming victory for the opposition.

"Zimbabwe faces a bad threat from a group of people that has no respect for the law", Biti, who was granted bail Thursday, told the court before his case was adjourned until next week.

Mnangagwa wrote on Twitter that Biti was released after he intervened personally in the case.

Earlier this month, Mnangagwa secured a comfortable victory, according to results from the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission, polling 2.46 million votes against 2.15 million for the 40-year-old Chamisa. The opposition said the result was rigged.

In the days following the poll, six opposition supporters died in clashes with the army, which has led some to question its neutrality.

The president-elect who is to be sworn into office this weekend and his party, Zanu-PF, have welcomed the court action.

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