More than 6.6 million voters are heading to the polls in Zimbabwe to elect their new president, legislators and local representatives. This election is of crucial importance, marked by an intense duel between the outgoing president Emmerson Mnangagwa and the leader of the opposition, Nelson Chamisa.
Zimbabwe is bracing for a defining day as more than 6.6 million voters converge on polling stations to cast their vote in presidential, parliamentary and local elections taking place this Wednesday. The chairperson of the country’s Electoral Commission, Priscilla Chigumba, announced that voter registration operations resulted in the registration of over 450,000 people, bringing the total number of voters to 6,623,511.
The most anticipated duel is that between the outgoing president, Emmerson Mnangagwa, and Nelson Chamisa, the leader of the Citizens’ Coalition for Change (CCC), the main opposition party. These two political figures had already faced each other during the 2018 presidential election, an election narrowly won by Mnangagwa.
However, the 2018 presidential election was marred by accusations of fraud by the opposition, which led to violent protests in Harare. President Mnangagwa, who took power following a coup that toppled former president Robert Mugabe, pledged last April to hold free and fair elections, while urging people to avoid violence .
The controversial law passed by Parliament banning civil society organizations from engaging in politics had sparked outrage from human rights groups and the international community. This law added a layer of complexity to an already tense electoral process.