NewsSouthern AfricaZimbabweans begin voting in first election since Mugabe's removal


Posted on Monday, 30 July 2018 10:10

Zimbabweans begin voting in first election since Mugabe's removal

By Reuters

Zimbabwe's main opposition leader Nelson Chamisa casts his vote at a polling station in Harare, Zimbabwe, July 30, 2018. Photo: Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi/AP/SIPAZimbabweans began voting in Harare this morning in the first election since the removal of former president Robert Mugabe.

Voters queued from before sunrise ahead of a watershed vote Zimbabweans hope will rid the country of its global pariah status and spark a recovery in its failed economy.

The election will see 75-year-old President Emmerson Mnangagwa, a long-time Mugabe ally, face 40-year-old Nelson Chamisa, a lawyer and pastor who is vying to become Zimbabwe's youngest head of state.

Voting started at 7 a.m. (0500 GMT) and will end at 7 p.m (1700 GMT).

One voter, Peter Kavuu said; "We just want change, that is the reason why we came out to vote early in the morning because we are sick and tired of this current government and we want change in Zimbabwe. For the past 38 years things have never changed, so we are hoping that change has come at the right time."

The polls give former intelligence chief Mnangagwa, who took over as president after the army ousted Mugabe in a bloodless coup in November, only a slim lead over Chamisa.

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