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Zimbabwe's Elections 2013 - Index of Articles
Khama speaks out on Zimbabwe poll audit
Martin Ngwenya, VOA News
November 05, 2013
View this article
on the VOA News website
Khama says Botswana was justified in requesting an audit of Zimbabwe’s
July 31st elections, saying his country was playing its role
as a Southern African Development Community (SADC) and a ‘good
neighbour’ in candidly expressing reservations about the poll.
made these remarks when he delivered his state of the nation address
in the capital, Gaborone.
Khama said Botswana’s
view that the Zimbabwe elections should be audited was as a result
of reports from various observer missions indicating that the harmonized
polls were not free and fair.
Botswana was the first African country to openly question Zimbabwe’s
election results after reports from its observer team described
the poll as a ‘circus’.
However, following a meeting on the sidelines of a SADC summit
in Malawi in August, President Khama and his counterpart, Robert
Mugabe, agreed the two countries needed to work together.
Khama, in his state of the nation address, reiterated the need for
stronger ties between the two countries, arguing it was only their
duty to question Zimbabwe’s electoral process.
He was once quoted as saying the elections were not conducted in
a free political environment.
A Zimbabwean resident in Botswana, Caiphus Msipa, said Khama did
not want to stir up controversy in his speech but has a duty to
inform his nation on pertinent issues.
Meanwhile, President Khama also noted that Zimbabwean illegal immigrants
continue to stretch Botswana’s resources.
He said between October last year and May this year, Botswana deported
31,461 illegal immigrants.
Khama said his country has adopted a new system to screen immigrants
seeking work and residence permits.
Botswana believes a new point-based system will improve transparency
at a time when most applicants complain of being unfairly rejected.
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