Officials: Zimbabwe rivals face runoff

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Officials: Zimbabwe rivals face runoff

Post by HeadBanger on May 2nd 2008, 12:24 pm

(CNN) -- A runoff has been declared in Zimbabwe's controversial presidential election after officials said main opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai won 47.9 percent of votes, compared to 43.2 percent for President Robert Mugabe.

Since neither Tsvangirai nor Mugabe received 50 percent plus one vote, a runoff election is required by law. The Electoral Commission said Friday it would announce a date for the runoff election later.

But the opposition Movement for Democratic Change has disagreed with the result, The Associated Press reports, adding that MDC polling agent Chris Mbanga said: "We have been overruled. We are in dispute. It is not fair."

The opposition said a meeting is planned for this weekend to decide whether to reverse its stance on the runoff.

Results almost identical to the official ones were reported to CNN Thursday -- the commission's first day of the verification process -- by a senior official with Mugabe's ruling ZANU-PF party who did not want to be named.

A delay in announcing the results of the March 29 election has prompted accusations of vote-rigging and calls from around the world for Mugabe to step down after 28 years in power.

The opposition Movement for Democratic Change has repeatedly said that Tsvangirai won the election but ZANU-PF alleges that the opposition has been engaged in election tampering.

Tsvangirai's party says he won with 50.3 percent of the vote, enough to avoid a runoff under Zimbabwean law.

http://www.cnn.com/2008/WORLD/africa/05/02/zimbabwe.main/index.html

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