By Thandiwe Garusa
ZIMBABWE in its capacity as chair of Sadc’s Organ on Politics Defence and Security will lead the regional body’s observer mission to oversee the elections in neighbouring Mozambique, it has been announced.
According to a statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Zimbabwe will head the Sadc Electoral Observer Mission (SEOM) advance team to the presidential, provincial and legislative elections to be held on 15 October 2019 in Mozambique.
Defence Minister Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri will lead the SEOM to Mozambique during the period 2nd to 22 October 2019 as mandated by President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Shepherd Gwenzi said Muchinguri’s team will work with other stakeholders to ensure a free and fair election.
“Honourable Muchinguri Kashiri will work closely with all the relevant stakeholders to ensure that the elections are conducted in a free, fair and credible manner and in accordance with domestic and Sadc relevant statutes.
“The core mandate of the SEOM shall be to determine the adherence of the Republic of Mozambique to democratic values and principles envisioned in the Sadc Treaty, the Sadc protocol on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation, and the provisions of the Revised Sadc Principles and Guidelines Governing Democratic Elections (2015),” the statement read in part.
“Elections will be observed based on a three-phase approach, the pre-elections phase, the elections phase and the post elections phase.”
Muchinguri-Kashiri is expected to launch SEOM Mozambique on Monday 7th October 2019 and to release the preliminary statement on the conduct of the elections on Thursday 17 October, 2019. She will be accompanied by Zanu PF information chief Simon Khaya-Moyo.
A recent report of the Sadc Electoral Advisory Council (SEAC) Goodwill Mission to the Republic of Mozambique said the country is ready and prepared to conduct the elections as scheduled.