Zimbabwe court rejects MDC demand

Judge throws out opposition request to order release of presidential poll results.

    The MDC claims Tsvangirai was the outright winner of the March presidential election [AFP]

    Al Jazeera's Supa Mandiwanzera, reporting from Harare, said there was no immediate explanation for the ruling as the judgment was still being typed.
    "It took no more than two minutes for the high court judge to deliver his judgment," he said.
    Nelson Chamisa, the MDC spokesman, said: "Naturally we are very disappointed because I think we have a very strong case. We are going to decide the way forward after meeting our lawyers, but in our view the release of those results is very, very urgent."
    The MDC went to the High Court after a long delay in issuing the result by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC).
    Opposition allegations
    The opposition claims Morgan Tsvangirai, its leader, was the outright winner of the presidential election and that Robert Mugabe, the country's president, is holding back the presidential results.
    The electoral commission has said it is still verifying the votes.
    But the MDC says Mugabe is delaying the results in order to prepare a violent response to his biggest electoral setback - his party lost control of parliament in a vote held the same day as the presidential polls.
    Mugabe's ruling Zanu-PF party says neither Tsvangirai nor Mugabe won an absolute majority in the presidential vote and a run-off will be necessary.
    ZEC has ordered a recount of 23 constituencies, a move likely to delay results even further.
    The MDC says the move will allow Mugabe to rig the elections.

    International pressure is mounting for publication of the results.
    At a summit in Lusaka, Zambia's capital over the weekend, Southern African leaders said the election result should be released "expeditiously".

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


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