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Zanu PF lashes out at SADC observer head

HARARE – Zanu PF spokesperson Christopher Mutsvangwa has lashed out at the head of the SADC Election Observer Mission, Nevers Mumba, after the Zambian issued a stinging assessment of the country’s harmonised electoral process.

Mutsvangwa said Mumba was biased and overstepped his mandate by questioning the constitutionality of Forever Associate Zimbabwe (FAZ) and its origin. He said Mumba was seen associating with the opposition CCC and favouring some CSOs like ZESN and ERC over FAZ. He said ZESN and ERC were arrested for trying to announce results before ZEC, while FAZ complied with the police orders.

Mutsvangwa defended FAZ as a legitimate CSO that was similar to the colonial-era groups that spied for Zanu PF and other liberation movements. He said FAZ was not a threat to the electoral process, which he claimed was peaceful and credible.

Presenting SADC’s preliminary statement, Mumba had expressed concern over the regressive legal changes, intimidation, and lack of transparency that marred the election. He said the election fell short of many regional and international standards.

Mumba’s remarks were unexpected, as SADC usually endorses Zimbabwe’s elections despite controversies.