The United States has formally commented on the political situation in Zimbabwe noting that the historic process should be challenged via legal channels.
But of more importance that the July 30 polls should spur leaders on to plan and execute much needed reforms for the southern African nation affected negatively by years of sanctions.
“The United States remains focused on working with Zimbabwe as its people and government strive toward still-needed comprehensive electoral, political, economic, and human rights reforms,” a statement issued on August 3 by Heather Nauert, a US Department of State spokesperson.
The U.S. said it deplored the use of disproportionate force by the security forces on protesters. “We extend our condolences to the families and friends of those killed and injured and appeal to the leaders of all parties to urge their supporters to act peacefully,” the statement added.
It continued: “The United States welcomes the commitment by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) to release comprehensive election results in a form that provides full transparency. The United States will continue to review the data collected by its own observation teams, by international observation missions, and by local observers to make a complete assessment of the overall election.
“We encourage all stakeholders and citizens to pursue any grievances peacefully and through established legal channels, and we encourage all political leaders to show magnanimity in victory and graciousness in defeat.”
The ruling Zanu-PF swept an overwhelming parliamentary majority but its presidential candidate Emmerson Mnangagwa narrowly avoided a run-off against Nelson Chamisa of the Movement for Democratic Change Alliance.
Mnangagwa polled 50.8% of total valid votes cast as against Chamisa’s over 44%. The MDC Alliance has however insisted that the results were tampered with and have hinted of mounting a challenge through the courts.