Zimbabwe presidential inauguration delayed amid court challenge

Zimbabwe opposition file presidential poll challenge

Zimbabwe opposition file presidential poll challenge

The filing of the petition also means Mnangagwa's inauguration, which had been scheduled for Sunday, will have to be cancelled until the court renders a decision on the matter.

Chamisa's lawyer Thabani Mpofu said he had asked the Constitutional Court to nullify the July 30 vote and that his court application meant Mnangagwa's swearing-in had been halted.

Opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) leader Nelson Chamisa addresses a media conference following the announcement of election results in Harare, Zimbabwe, August 3, 2018.

The outspoken politician was further barred from making any public political statement and to report twice a day at CID law and order division until the court ruled otherwise.

Party leader Nelson Chamisa tweeted: "Our legal team successfully filed our court papers".

Earlier on Friday, opposition leader and former finance minister Tendai Biti appeared in court to challenge his arrest on Thursday on charges of public violence and illegally announcing election results.

ZEC declared that Mnangagwa won the election with 50.8 percent of the vote while Chamisa was said to have come second with 44.3 percent of the vote.

"In the alternative, we seek that there be another election which complies with the dictates of the law", Mpofu said. On Wednesday, General Sibusiso Moyo (Foreign Affairs) sent a circular to diplomatic missions stationed in Zimbabwe inviting their officers to attend Mnangagwa's in inauguration at the national sports stadium.

Analysts say the legal challenge has little chance of success given the courts' historic tilt towards the ZANU-PF, which has ruled since independence from British colonial rule in 1980. Six died after soldiers opened fire on the protesters in a response the opposition alliance called "disproportionate and unjustified".

He faced allegations of inciting the protests last week by proclaiming victory for the opposition.

It said it had received numerous complaints of intimidation, often by men in military uniform, of voters thought to have backed the opposition. "We call on Zimbabwe's leaders to guarantee Mr. Biti's physical safety and ensure his constitutional and human rights are respected, consistent with the rule of law and Zimbabwe's worldwide obligations and commitments", she said.

The president-elect who is to be sworn into office this weekend and his party, Zanu-PF, have welcomed the court action.

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