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Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa [left] addresses supporters of the ruling party Zanu-PF | Coastweek

BINDURA Zimbabwe (Xinhua) -- Zimbabwe President Emmerson Mnangagwa [left] addresses supporters of the ruling party Zanu-PF during a political rally at the Chipadze Stadium in Bindura, Mashonaland Central Province, Zimbabwe. MARONDERA Zimbabwe (Xinhua) -- Zimbabwean ruling party ZANU-PF supporters [right] participate in a rally held by Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa in Marondera, Mashonaland East Province, Zimbabwe. Emmerson Mnangagwa on Saturday reminded ruling party ZANU-PF supporters to shun political violence as the party is looking forward to a clean and violence-free victory in the July 30 elections. XINHUA PHOTOS - SHAUN JUSA

Zimbabwe political parties conclude election
campaigning ahead of Monday's voting

HARARE Zimbabwe (Xinhua) -- Zimbabwean political parties concluded their political campaigning on Saturday ahead of Monday’s vote.

Both Zimbabwean president Emmerson Mnangagwa and his main challenger Nelson Chamisa of the MDC Alliance held their final rallies in the capital Harare.

 Director for public relations of Zimbabwe Defense Forces (ZDF) Overson Mugwisi | Coastweek

  Zimbabwe’s constitution stipulates that campaigning must end 24 hours before election day.

Both leaders urged their supporters to turn out in numbers on Monday to secure victory for their parties.

Mnangagwa and Chamisa also urged their supporters to maintain peace to ensure the polls are held in a peaceful environment.

Mnangagwa, who took over from former president Robert Mugabe who resigned in November last year, has in the past few months been traversing the country to drum up support for his governing ZANU-PF party.

Chamisa has also been travelling across the country over the past months soliciting votes for the party whose leadership he assumed in February following the death of founding leader Morgan Tsvangirai.

In total, Chamisa said he addressed 82 rallies across Zimbabwe with three quarters of them being held in rural areas, previously no-go areas for the party under Mugabe’s rule.

Mnangagwa said apart from bringing economic prosperity, his party will also ensure the protection of Zimbabwe’s heritage once re-elected.

HARARE Zimbabwe (Xinhua) -- Director for public relations of Zimbabwe Defense Forces (ZDF) Overson Mugwisi attends a press conference in Harare, Zimbabwe. The ZDF assured Wednesday it has no direct role to play in the upcoming elections and quashed local private media reports that it had deployed its members in rural areas to campaign for the ruling party and intimidate the electorate. XINHUA PHOTO - SHAUN JUSA
"This coming Monday we will win the election. We are not voting for today or tomorrow but we are voting for generations to come.

"Together we will unlock the potential of our beloved country.

"Together we will build a new Zimbabwe for all," Mnangagwa told thousands of party supporters gathered at the National Sports Stadium in Harare.

Chamisa also expressed confidence of winning, saying his party will form the next government in Zimbabwe.

"We are going to the new Zimbabwe.

"We are the next government in this country.

"Out of the 5.6 million registered voters, we expect to get not less than 65 percent.

"We want a clean sweep to silence our opponents," he told thousands of party supporters gathered at an open space just outside Harare.

He said once elected, the party will institute measures to immediately respond to the needs of the people as well as building a non-racial Zimbabwe that respects workers rights and boasts of an efficient economy.


Zimbabwe President Emmerson Mnangagwa winds up election campaign

HARARE Zimbabwe (Xinhua) -- Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa ended his election campaign Saturday and rallied Zimbabweans to vote for the ruling ZANU-PF party in Monday’s polls for national growth and prosperity.

Addressing thousands of party supporters at the National Sports Stadium in the capital Harare in his closing campaign rally, Mnagangwa said ZANU-PF was the only political party capable of protecting Zimbabwe’s heritage because it is the one that waged the war of liberation that brought independence in 1980.

"On Monday it’s the end of a long road for all of us and the beginning of a new journey.

"We have worked hard over the past few months persuading and engaging people.

"We have been peaceful, respectful and dignified and what is wanted now is only one push on Monday to vote for ZANU-PF so that we have a thunderous victory in the history of this country," Mnangagwa said.

Mnangagwa replaced former president Robert Mugabe who resigned in November last year after a military intervention which ended his 37 years in power.

Over the past few months, he has been traversing across the country campaigning to drum up support for the ruling party.

He will square off with 22 other presidential candidates in the polls but his main rivalry is Nelson Chamisa, the 40-year-old leader of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) Alliance.

There are 5.6 million people who registered to vote in the first post-Mugabe elections which will be held in the presence of Western observers for the first time in 16 years.

Mnangagwa said once elected, he would steer Zimbabwe’s economy into a growth trajectory characterized by modern infrastructure, food and energy self-sufficiency, among others.

He said Zimbabwe’s economy was already on a growth path since he assumed office eight months ago owing to his "Zimbabwe is open for business" mantra which has seen the country attracting over 15 billion U.S. dollars in investment commitments.

He said Zimbabwe’s GDP was expected to rise from 4.2 percent initially projected to 6 percent by year-end due to favorable policies that have been implemented by his government.

COMESA deploys observer mission for Zimbabwe polls

HARARE Zimbabwe (Xinhua) -- The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) on Friday deployed its short-term observers to Zimbabwe’s Monday polls.

Prior to deployment, the 19 observers underwent an intensive training to equip them with information on the legal frameworks of Zimbabwe as well as election observation skills and tools.

The regional economic grouping joins several other organizations including the Southern African Development Community, African Union, European Union and the Commonwealth that have deployed throughout the country for the crunch polls.

"Our mission will endeavor to observe the various phases of the electoral cycle including campaigns, voting, vote counting and declaration of election results," head of the observer mission Ashraf Gamal Rashed told reporters.

The deployment comes after COMESA in May conducted a pre-election assessment during which it interacted with various Zimbabwe electoral stakeholders.

European Union Election Mission deploys 44
short-term observers for Zimbabwe polls

HARARE Zimbabwe (Xinhua) -- The European Union Election Observation Mission (EU EOM) on Friday deployed 44 short-term observers throughout Zimbabwe for Monday’s polls, its third contingent following the core team and the 44 long-term observers who arrived in Zimbabwe early June.

"The short-term observers will cover all ten provinces in both, urban and rural areas.

"Together with the other EU EOM observers they will be the eyes and the ears of the mission on election day, during polling, counting and tabulation of results", said Chief Observer Elmar Brok.

Prior to deployment the short-term observers received a two-day in depth briefing on the electoral background, voting procedures, the political environment and other topics.

The observers will also be joined by the Delegation of the European Parliament and EU diplomats accredited in Zimbabwe on polling day.

In total, the EU EOM will comprise on election day 140 observers from all 28 member states as well as Norway, Switzerland and Canada.

"Although the EU EOM observers will be visiting many polling stations from the opening to the closing of the polls, they will not interfere in the process.

They are there to watch and take note of how the voting is conducted," said Brok.

The EU EOM will issue a preliminary statement two days after the elections with the final report - with technical recommendations for future elections - to be published later.

Zimbabwean opposition party urges supporters to go out and vote

HARARE Zimbabwe (Xinhua) -- Zimbabwean opposition MDC Alliance on Thursday urged its supporters to go and vote in their numbers, allaying fears of rigging which it has been raising during the run up to the July 30 election.

Former Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe and his wife Grace Mugabe | Coastweek

  Advocate Mpofu, lawyer and adviser for MDC Alliance presidential candidate Nelson Chamisa, told journalists in a press conference that the party was confident of winning and has already planned a peaceful transition of power from the ruling ZANU-PF."We have put together all the necessary strategies and instruments to ensure that your vote is secured.

"Go vote, your vote shall count," he said.

Mpofu expressed optimism that Chamisa would definitely win in next Monday’s polls.

"Each and every one of the many million votes that you are going to cast will receive effect and propel the country to a new order," Mpofu said.

Chamisa said Wednesday his party will not boycott the July 30 polls despite the electoral body refusing to address some of its concerns.

The opposition party is accusing the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) of being biased in favor of the ruling ZANU-PF and of refusing to implement electoral reforms including ensuring greater transparency on the voters’ roll and the ballot paper.

ZEC has denied the charges.

HARARE Zimbabwe (Xinhua) -- Former Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe and his wife Grace Mugabe meet reporters during a press conference at his residence in Harare. Mugabe said Sunday he will not vote for incumbent president Emmerson Mnangagwa who replaced him after he resigned following a military intervention. XINHUA PHOTOZHANG YULIANG

Chamisa is contesting for presidency with 22 other candidates including President Emmerson Mnangagwa.

Zimbabwe elections: leading contenders exude confidence

HARARE Zimbabwe (Xinhua) -- The leading contenders in Zimbabwe’s general elections are exuding confidence in winning the polls, with only four days before Zimbabweans choose their leaders for the next five years.

Addressing guests at the groundbreaking ceremony for a chrome processing plant in Midlands Province on Wednesday, President Emmerson Mnangagwa said he was confident of winning the elections, dismissing Nelson Chamisa’s challenge as a non-event.

In a statement to the nation on Thursday, Mnangagwa reiterated the five pledges he made in June: job creation; fighting corruption; establishing a modern and affordable healthcare system, infrastructure development; and creating educational and employment opportunities for youths.

The ruling party’s central theme for the election is "unite, fight corruption, develop, re-engage, create jobs".

Chamisa also on Wednesday said his alliance would win the elections, despite allegations in the alliance that the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission is biased in favor of ZANU-PF.

There had been talk that the alliance may boycott the elections but Chamisa said they would win against all odds.

"We cannot boycott our victory.

"The talk of boycotting is a machination by ZANU-PF to try and get us in a state of despondency," he said.


Zimbabwe electorate hoping a new government
will help create more jobs and ease cash crisis


Questions over credibility and loyalty remain at the forefront
as Zimbabwe gears up for first post-Robert Mugabe election



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