Monday, March 31, 2008

Potential Victory for Opposition in Zimbabwe


Voice of America—“Official Results Show Dead Heat in Zimbabwe Elections; Opposition Claims Big Lead”

BBC NEWS—“Profile: Morgan Tsvangirai”

More than forty-eight hours after polls closed, there is no announcement yet from Zimbabwe’s election commission as to the outcome of the nation’s presidential elections. The opposition party, Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), led by founder Morgan Tsvangirai, claims that it has ousted incumbent President Robert Mugabe of the ruling Zimbabwe National African Union—Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) party. As time passes without announcement of official returns in the election, other governments have expressed concern over the possibility of “mischief.”

President Mugabe has led Zimbabwe since its independence from British rule in 1980. His tenure has been a controversial one, in no small part as a result of his “indigenisation” efforts that critics claim have played a role in wrecking the nation’s economy. Mugabe has also been accused of human rights violations.

For his part, Mr. Tsvangirai, leader of the MDC, got his start in a labor union and is seen as the voice of a younger generation of Zimbabweans. He was instrumental in defeating President Mugabe’s campaign for a constitutional amendment that would permit eviction of white farm owners without compensation and is seen as being committed to turning around Zimbabwe’s floundering economy.

No comments: