Zimbabwe presidential inauguration delayed amid court challenge

MDC-T leader Nelson Chamisa

Emmerson Mnangagwa's inauguration as Zimbabwe's president has been postponed after the main opposition party filed a legal challenge to the results of last month's election.

The court now has 14 days to rule, and Justice Minister Ziyambi Ziyambi said the inauguration, once planned for Sunday for President Emmerson Mnangagwa, is "on hold' until then. We have a good case and cause!"

Protests broke out soon after as the opposition accused the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) of presiding over polls fraught with voter irregularities and plotting to rig the polls in favor of Mnangagwa's ruling Zanu-PF party.

Zanu-PF Secretary for Administration, Cde Obert Mpofu, has stated that the MDC Alliance exposed its hypocrisy in the just ended elections by wanting to win at all costs yet any race produces a victor and a loser. MDC leader Nelson Chamisa said on Twitter.

Mnangagwa, an ex-vice president and Mugabe's longtime confidant and enforcer, says he wants to make Zimbabwe more open and democratic.

On August 1, soldiers opened fire on MDC protesters, killing six people and sparking an worldwide outcry.

The former Finance minister, who is facing two counts of unlawfully and unofficially announcing results of the July 30 harmonised elections and another one of public violence, was yesterday granted $5 000 bail by a Harare magistrate with stringent conditions. "It is reported that the authorities handed him over to his country of origin today (Thursday) despite a court order to the contrary".

The United States government is gravely concerned by credible reports of numerous detentions, beatings, and other abuses of Zimbabweans over the past week, particularly targeting opposition activists.

Also on Friday, lawyers for senior opposition figure Tendai Biti asked judges to throw out charges against him over the protests against alleged election fraud, in a case raising further global concern about the new government. Biti had declared before the electoral commission's official announcement that Chamisa was the real victor.



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