MDC claims Mugabe's deputy has lost seat
The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC), the body running Saturday’s general elections, has cautioned against the MDC announcing unofficial results, fearing that could trigger public unrest.
And in a warning issued Sunday, Mugabe’s spokesman George Charamba said MDC claims of victory amounted to a coup d'etat, ominously adding: “We all know how coups are handled.”
Tsvangirai's MDC faction is rushing to announce results before the ZEC to stave off what it fears will be attempts by the election apparatus at rigging in Mugabe's favour.
The move was likely to anger Zimbabwe's security forces, who warned Thursday they would not tolerate any unilateral victory claims by the opposition.
And on Sunday afternoon, police raided MDC offices at a hotel in Harare, where party members were collating results, but took nothing.
Lovemore Moyo, the MDC chairman, told New Zimbabwe.com in a telephone interview at noon Sunday that data collated by the polling agents around the country showed the party had made significant inroads in traditional Zanu PF strongholds – including Mugabe’s rural home in Zvimba, where Local Government Minister Ignatius Chombo is projected losing Zvimba North constituency.
Mujuru, standing in Mt Darwin West, in Mashonaland East province, is trailing the MDC’s Gora Madzudzo, Moyo said.
Moyo also claimed that State Security Minister Didymus Mutasa had fallen in Headlands, Manicaland Province.
Moyo said while he expected official local government, senate and parliamentary election results to be made available at some stage Sunday, the presidential election results could take a day or two before they are made public.
Moyo said: “We are collecting our own data from the wards where counting began soon after voting. In the case of the presidential election, that information is sent to a district command centre where other wards also send their data and the votes are added up. The figures are then relayed to the national command centre which then tallies the figures from the districts.
“It would be impossible to have the presidential election results today, certainly.”
Mugabe, who declared himself confident of another five years to add to his 28 years in power Saturday, has vowed there will be no cheating, despite warning in recent weeks the opposition would "never" govern Zimbabwe.
He also said a runoff vote "won't be necessary," while recognising it was a constitutional requirement if he fails to take more than 50 per cent of the vote.
Saturday's voting in synchronised presidential, assembly, senate and local council elections was mostly peaceful apart from a bomb blast at the home of a Zanu PF parliamentary candidate in the second city Bulawayo, in which no-one was injured.
Some 5.9 million
voters were listed as registered to vote in the polls, seen as a vote
mainly on the economic chaos wrought by Mugabe's populist policies that
have resulted in six-figure inflation and widespread food, fuel and
drug shortages. But the voters' roll is in a shambles leading the MDC
to estimate the real number of eligible voters at closer to 3.5 million.
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