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You are here:Home>>Strategic Research & Analysis>>PhotoNews:Zimbabwe election - Mugabe Vs Tsvangirai
Wednesday, 31 July 2013 14:57

PhotoNews:Zimbabwe election - Mugabe Vs Tsvangirai

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Mugabe, Tsvangirai Mugabe, Tsvangirai photo: mail & guardian SA

"Long queues have formed at polling stations in Zimbabwe as people vote in fiercely contested elections which have already been hit by fraud allegations.

President Robert Mugabe, 89, has said he will step down after 33 years in power if he and his Zanu-PF party lose. Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) has accused Zanu-PF of doctoring the electoral roll, a charge it has denied. Campaigning for the presidential and parliamentary poll was mostly peaceful.

Zanu-PF and the MDC have shared an uneasy coalition government since 2009 under a deal brokered to end the deadly violence that erupted after a disputed presidential poll the previous year.The government has barred Western observers from monitoring Wednesday's elections, but the African Union (AU) and the Southern African Development Community (Sadc), as well as local organisations, have been accredited. Polls opened at 07:00 local time (05:00 GMT) and are due to close at 17:00 GMT.

The turnout is expected to be high among the 6.4 million people registered to vote, with tens of thousands attending rallies in recent weeks. Results are due within five days. Wednesday has been declared a national holiday to ensure people can vote. Despite this, voters queued for several hours outside polling stations before they opened, reports the BBC's Nomsa Maseko in Harare.

Zimbabwe Election Support Network, the main domestic monitoring agency, said the vote appeared to be taking place without too many problems, Reuters news agency reports."There are some concerns around long queues, but generally, it's smooth," said its spokesman Thabani Nyoni.

Former Nigerian President Olesegun Obasanjo, who heads a group of African Union monitors, said the elections seemed credible. "It's been quiet, it's been orderly. The first place I called in this morning, they opened prompt at seven o'clock and there haven't been any serious incidents that... would not reflect the will of the people." he told Reuters news agency." - BBC

Robert Mugabe casts his vote in Highfields outside HarareMr Mugabe, who has led Zimbabwe for 33 years and wife Grace (middle) voting

Morgan Tsvangirai votes with his wife Elizabeth Macheka in HarareMr Tsvangirai, casting his ballot in Harare with his wife Elizabeth Macheka

A policeman stands as Zimbabweans line up near a polling station in Harare to vote in a general election on 31 July 2013

An 80-year-old Zimbabwean casts her vote in a polling station in a pass cart in Harare on 31 July 2013

MDC supporters in Zimbabwe at a campaign rally

A Zanu-PF poster with indigenise spelt incorrectly

Supporters of Zimbabwe's prime minister climb up a tree during an election rally in Harare on 29 July 2013

Zimbabweans line up near a polling station in Harare to vote in a general election on 31 July 2013

Last modified on Wednesday, 31 July 2013 15:11

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