UN speaks on Zimbabwe's 2018 elections

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The United Nations mission in Zimbabwe has claimed President Emmerson Mnangagwa's ruling government is doing its best to ensure that a mid-year general election is "free and fair."

Bishow Parajuli, UN Resident Co-ordinator for the UN Development Programme (UNDP) in Zimbabwe, said in New York last week that he believed Zimbabwe was prepared to hold a credible vote.

"As far as we see it, there are some good signs because the new voters' rolls are being developed, with 5,4 million in new voter registration," he said.

"There is a lot of engagement between political parties and the ruling faction; engagement between the election commission, civil society and others. The political parties themselves are getting together to agree on a code of conduct for holding peaceful elections. So, all these signs are positive."

The vote, due by end of August, is seen as a major test for Mnangagwa's democratic credentials since he came to power in November after a de facto army coup ousted 94-year-old Robert Mugabe.

Parajuli said Mnangagwa was building "a new Zimbabwe" and was "very active in terms of promoting engagement, contrary to the past administration."

– DailyNews


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