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Hwende says SADC will not intervene in Zimbabwe’s electoral dispute

Chalton Hwende

Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) legislator Chalton Hwende says Zimbabweans should forget about the Southern African Development Community (SADC) intervening in the disputed 2023 harmonized elections.

Hwende’s remarks contradict CCC’s former leader Nelson Chamisa who recently claimed he was in contact with SADC leaders to intervene and “resolve the governance crisis” in Zimbabwe.

Speaking in an X space, Hwende, a former close ally of Chamisa, said that no intervention would come from SADC, adding that the matter is a closed chapter. Said Hwende (via NewZimbabwe.com):

We met the executive secretary of SADC. We went to meet the executive secretary in Botswana and during the same meeting, I then raised the issue of Zimbabwe to say we are waiting for you in Zimbabwe because we think according to your report the elections were a sham, it was rigged and you need to come and help the country to resolve that issue and they all laughed including the executive secretary.

A whole country can not wait for a SADC that is not coming. They said that the case is closed and we are not coming to Zimbabwe.

At that time they were claiming they had not received a letter and I knew advocate Chamisa had written them a letter but this is the contempt these bodies have for opposition politics.

There is no SADC that is going to come. I am willing to put my head on the chopping block. If you ever see SADC can force an election in Zimbabwe I will resign as a politician.

Since the SADC Elections Observer Mission (SEOM) delivered its final report on Zimbabwe’s election, there has been a deafening silence from the regional body as far as resolving the dispute is concerned.

SADC is set to hold its 44th Head of State summit which will be hosted by Zimbabwe with President Mnangagwa assuming the chairmanship of the regional bloc.

Hwende said SADC did its part and the onus is now on Zimbabweans to implement the recommendations that were made by SEOM. He said:

SADC spoke very well. Their report is very clear that the elections did not meet the expected standards that are expected.

That to me is as far as what SADC can do. It is now up to Zimbabweans to organize ourselves and enforce that resolution from SADC.

SADC has no history of ever ordering fresh elections anywhere else it will have to start in Zimbabwe but the preparations that they are doing to install Mr Mnangagwa to be a chairperson of SADC clearly shows you that there is no appetite in SADC to go beyond their report.

To them, their work is done. The biggest challenge we have is we are afraid of organizing ourselves and demanding our own rights that are enshrined in the constitution that is why everyone is hiding behind SADC.

There is no SADC that is going to come. I am willing to put my head on the chopping block. If you ever see SADC can force an election in Zimbabwe I will resign as a politician.

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