Zimbabwe's Constitutional Court in Harare upheld President Emmerson Mnangagwa's presidential election win in a decision announced on Friday afternoon, August 24. According to the court, the opposition failed to produce "sufficient and credible evidence" that the vote had been rigged to justify overturning the original results. Friday's announcement means that Mnangagwa's inauguration ceremony will be organized within 48 hours. A heavy security presence was deployed throughout Harare in the lead-up to Friday's announcement, and tight security should continue to be expected through the weekend. Protests denouncing the decision are possible, and violence cannot be ruled out.
On August 3, the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) declared incumbent President Mnangagwa winner of the July 30 presidential election. According to the results, Mnangagwa garnered 2.46 million votes, while runner-up Nelson Chamisa secured 2.15 million votes. However, Chamisa alleged that the election should be invalidated due to incidents of theft and fraud. On August 1, authorities deployed the army to disperse opposition protesters in Harare, with security forces firing live ammunition at demonstrators, killing at least six people.
The July 30 elections were the first in Zimbabwe since Robert Mugabe stepped down as president in November 2017 after 37 years in power.
Individuals in Zimbabwe, and especially in Harare, are advised to avoid all demonstrations and closely monitor the situation. Be prepared to shelter in place in case of further violence, which could flare up with little warning.
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