BBC Africa is reporting that Zimbabwe’s president Robert Mugabe has said that he will abide by a Zimbabwean constitutional court ruling that elections should be held by the end of July. BBC Africa reports:
“Zimbabwe’s Constitutional Court said on Friday that elections must be held by 31 July, and that Mr. Mugabe should set a date ‘as soon as possible’.
Mr. Mugabe has been in coalition with the former opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai since 2009.
Mr. Tsvangirai’s party has said it is ready for ‘free and fair elections’.”
You may recall that in 2008, Tsvangirai won the first round of elections, only to pull out of the second round after increasing violence against his supporters. During this time Tsvangirai and his then-wife Susan were involved in a freak car accident in which the couple was hit head-on by a truck. Mrs. Tsvangirai died in the accident while Mr. Tsvangirai sustained injuries. President Mugabe went forward with the elections after Tsvangirai pulled out, winning 85% of the vote. Amid international controversy over Mugabe’s win, regional mediators intervened to organize a power-sharing agreement with Tsvangirai.
Zimbabwe’s constitutional referendum includes new checks and balances that have been agreed to by all involved parties. Despite the changes, some believe that president Mugabe may still win this election due to increasing dissatisfaction with Tsvangirai and voter apathy.
President Mugabe has been in power since 1980.
Read more at BBC Africa.