My attention has been drawn to some sections of the Zambian media outlets purporting to quote from the SADC Lawyers Election Observer Mission Preliminary Report on the Zimbabwe Harmonised 2013 elections.
As Head of the Mission, I am the sole spokesperson of the Mission and I wish to clarify that (1) The SADC Lawyers Election Observer Mission is the only international Observer group that qualified the ‘peace’ which prevailed in Zimbabwe prior and in the run up to the election. We observed that ‘Zimbabwe was ‘surprisingly quiet’ in the period leading to the election and described this as ‘apparently peaceful’ which is not the same as ‘peaceful’ in the substantive sense.
As Observers, our task was merely to reflect Zimbabwe peoples’ sentiments and atmosphere as far as we could. Second, it is important to observe that this is only preliminary report and the media would do themselves and their readers justice to wait for the final report which will be detailed and is due shortly. Counting the chickens before the eggs are hatched is clearly immoral and indecent political game.
Prof. Michelo Hansungule
Head: SADC Lawyers Election Observer Mission tyo the 2013 Zimbabwe Harmonised Elections
3rd August, 2013