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Mnangagwa re-elected president of Zimbabwe – but opposition rejects result

Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa has been re-elected for a second and final term as final results were announced much earlier than expected following a troubled vote in the African country.

Within minutes of the announcement, a spokesperson for the main opposition party said they rejected the “hastily assembled” results.

Mr Mnangagwa won 52.6% of the vote, the Zimbabwe Election Commission said last night in the capital, Harare.

Opposition leader of the Citizens Coalition for Change Party, Nelson Chamisa, won 44% of the vote, according to the commission.


The result will likely be scrutinised after election observers from the European Union and African Union raised questions over the environment in the build-up to the vote and pointed to an atmosphere of intimidation against Mr Chamisa’s supporters.

The election was due to be held on just one day, last Wednesday, but voting was extended to Thursday after delays and problems with the printing of ballot papers.

Results of the presidential election were expected on Monday but came just two days after the ballots closed, much sooner than expected.

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Promise Mkwananzi, a spokesperson for the Citizens Coalition for Change Party, said: “We reject any results hastily assembled without proper verification.

“We will advise citizens on the next steps as the situation develops.”

The result keeps the ruling Zanu-PF party in the presidency.

Supporters of President Mnangagwa. Pic: AP

Zanu-PF has been in government for 43 years since Zimbabwe won independence from white minority rule in 1980.

Mr Mnangagwa replaced long-ruling autocrat Robert Mugabe in a coup in 2017 and won a disputed election by a razor-thin margin against Mr Chamisa in 2018.

Ahead of the results being announced, dozens of armed police with water cannon guarded the national results centre, the scene of deadly violence after the previous vote five years ago when the army killed six people following protests over delays in announcing presidential election results.

Nelson Chamisa. Pic: AP
Nelson Chamisa. Pic: AP

Many people in the country of 15 million are sure to view the result with suspicion.

Zimbabwe has a long history of allegedly rigging and disputing the outcome of polls, which has led to violent protests and challenges to election results.


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