HARARE, ZIMBABWE (AUGUST 22, 2018)(REUTERS) – A legal showdown between Zimbabwe’s President Emmerson Mnangagwa and the opposition leader challenging his election victory is due to start on Wednesday (August 22) at the country’s top court.
The main leader of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), Nelson Chamisa said last month’s vote was rigged and challenged the result by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC), which gave Mnangagwa 2.46 million votes against 2.15 million votes for the MDC leader.
Mnangagwa filed submissions in the Constitutional Court asking the court to dismiss Chamisa’s application.
The case has been cast as a major test of the independence of the highest court whose verdict cannot be appealed. The court could throw the case out, declare a new winner or order a fresh election within 60 days.
Riot police on Wednesday blocked roads leading to the court in the capital Harare and vehicles carrying water cannon were parked nearby. But scores of people have turned up outside the Constitutional court to watch the start of proceedings on screens outside with millions more expected to watch on television.