This week has been marred by xenophobic violence in
This weekend Zimbabwe's opposition party announced that it would take part in the next round of presidential "elections." Violence, harassment, and intimidation of unarmed citizens continue as part of the government's preparation for the "elections." In my understanding, there are three basic rules that qualify a process to be described as a legitimate election (election 101!):
- Elections are part of a democratic package that includes freedom, democracy, and peace. [...]
The Zimbabwean tragedy continues. Presidential results were released after a record five-week delay! According to election law, a candidate must secure above 50% of the vote to be declared a winner. If there is no winner, a rerun must occur three weeks after the announcement of the results. There are loopholes in the election law that give the election commissioner powers to extend the time period for a rerun. The results are as follows:
A lot has happened this past week, starting with the international day of prayer for Zimbabwe on Sunday, April 27. Churches all over the world stood in solidarity with the plight of Zimbabweans and condemned the widespread violence and intimidation of citizens by the government.
Not surprisingly, there were counterclaims by government and some politicians in the region that the violence is exaggerated and not "serious." This got me thinking about what constitutes "serious violence." [...]
Catholic and Protestant church groups in Zimbabwe have voiced deep alarm about the Mugabe government's organized violence against those perceived to have voted against it, and its refusal to release the results of the March 29 elections. Despite the economic and social disaster Mugabe's government has brought on Zimbabwe in recent [...]
This morning's newspaper headlines are about the comment on Zimbabwe made by Jendayi Frazer, U.S. assistant secretary for African Affairs. Her statements reflect the reality of the situation in Zimbabwe that is evident to most people, including African leaders -- namely, that the current post-election crisis is happening because Mugabe lost the elections and his current presidency and government is constitutionally illegal. The silence from African leaders reminds me of the story of the [...]
It is difficult to make sense of the current ominous political drama surrounding the result of the presidential elections in Zimbabwe.
Let me set the context of the elections, which were held March 29, 2008. These elections were unique in that there were four different elections taking place simultaneously. Each voter had to complete four different voting forms for presidential, senate, parliament, and local government nominations. There were about 9,000 voting stations around the [...]
The patience of the people of Zimbabwe is absolutely incredible. They've been living a nightmare for years (inflation is so high that a second cup of coffee in half an hour can cost twice as much as the first) and they just endured a election campaign with serious instances of vote-rigging - from ghosts on the voters' registry to bribes offered for voting for the ruling party (ZANU-PF) - yet amazing hope was the dominant emotion as people went to the polls on March 29. The voting process was [...]