2023 ELECTIONS: Mnangagwa scrambles to secure international acceptance as isolation looms – Analysts

President Emmerson Mnangagwa

Mnangagwa pushes for international recognition of election results

Analysts say President Emmerson Mnangagwa appears to be urgently lobbying foreign powers to legitimize his victory in Zimbabwe’s recent presidential election. The election was deemed “flawed” by observer missions from multilateral groups like the African Union, Commonwealth, European Union and SADC.

In the aftermath of the disputed vote, Mnangagwa has convened meetings with ambassadors from across the globe in an effort to promote his re-election narrative. Last Sunday, SADC envoys stationed in Zimbabwe were summoned and pressure was put on the regional bloc’s election observer team to tone down their critical report.

Political commentators note Mnangagwa’s clear desperation to shore up international acceptance of the results given the substantial credibility issues raised.

Analyst Romeo Chasara stated Mnangagwa’s eagerness for legitimacy reflects his awareness of the mandate questions hovering over his presidency. Similarly, Rashweat Mukundu argued the flawed process could lead to deeper isolation, especially from the Commonwealth whose admission Mnangagwa had sought. Mukundu suggested the Commonwealth may outline conditions for Zimbabwe’s potential readmission based on addressing electoral malpractice concerns.

Overall, observers see Mnangagwa pulling out all the diplomatic stops to try and validate his reelection globally, underscoring uncertainty around his staying in power without a clean vote of confidence from the international community.

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