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EU Election Observers In Zimbabwe Denied Bribery Allegations

11 months agoSun, 20 Aug 2023 05:00:22 GMT
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EU Election Observers In Zimbabwe Denied Bribery Allegations

A European Union (EU) election observation team in Zimbabwe denied allegations of involvement in a bribery scandal reported by a state-owned newspaper. The Herald newspaper claimed that the EU media team had distributed whiskey and grocery vouchers to 18 journalists in an attempt to “influence journalists to make outlandish claims that seek to sully the whole election process”.

Fabio Massimo Castaldo, head of the EU delegation, strongly denied these allegations, stating that they were unfounded and fabricated. He expressed concern over ongoing attempts to discredit the EU mission and undermine credible election observation. He said:

These allegations are based on unsubstantiated rumours and entirely fabricated.

They reflect a continued effort to undermine the EU EOM and credible election observation.

Castaldo added that his observers do not participate in “inappropriate activities”.

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The EU, along with other foreign organizations such as the African Union, the Commonwealth, and the Southern African Development Community (SADC), has been invited to monitor the elections.

The upcoming elections in Zimbabwe, scheduled for August 23, will be crucial for a country long burdened by tainted elections under the ruling ZANU-PF party since its independence in 1980. The presidential race primarily involves President Emmerson Mnangagwa (80) and Nelson Chamisa (45), against a backdrop of corruption, inflation, poverty, and unemployment in the country.

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