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Zimbabwe's Elections 2013 - Index of Articles
election case judgement reserved indefinitely
and George Mpofu, Free and Fair Zimbabwe Election
August 14, 2013
View this article
on the Free and Fair Zimbabwe Election website
Electoral Court on Wednesday decided to withhold judgement in the
case brought by Morgan Tsvangirai challenging the results
of the July 31 elections that his MDC-T party has said was rigged
to give victory to President Robert Mugabe.
Chinembiri Bhunu told the court that he would reserve his decision
indefinitely and issue a written judgement at an unspecified date.
President Mugabe won the general election with 61 percent of the
vote, to Mr Tsvangirai’s 34 percent. Mr Tsvangirai called
the poll outcome a “monumental farce” and applied
to the court last Friday to cancel the result and order a re-run.
The court had 14 days to decide.
judge reserved his judgement and he indicated that he was going
to give a written judgement in due course,” Fred Gijima, Mr
Mugabe’s lawyer, told reporters outside the Court.
“There is no set
down date that has been given in which he is going to hand down
the judgement,” he said.
Mr Tsvangirai had asked
the court to order the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) to provide
a forensic examination of the voters’ roll, ballots and voter
registration slips. The party has also applied to the High Court
to force the ZEC to produce copies of the voters’ roll and
provide the presidential election results for each constituency.
“We need those
materials to demonstrate beyond doubt that the election was improperly
conducted, to demonstrate that the will of the people is not reflected
in that election,” said Mr Tsvangirai’s lawyer Lewis
“There must be
a reason why they do not want to make provision of those materials
and that reason is that they are, definitely in our submissions,
ghosts in those sealed materials that they do not want us to access.”
Independent local observers
and Western powers have also questioned the credibility of the elections,
but regional groups SADC and the African Union were less critical,
describing the election as “free and peaceful”.
The judge’s decision
to defer a decision indefinitely effectively shelves Mr Tsvangirai’s
application. Zimbabwe’s judiciary are generally considered
partisan in favour of Mr Mugabe’s Zanu-PF.
The election result gives
Zanu-PF a two-thirds majority in the parliament which means it can
change the constitution and make laws with impunity.
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