Pathetic show at Senate elections

President Robert Mugabe's party had by late last night won 40 of the 46 senate seats whose results had been announced, with the remainder going to the MDC. ZANU PF also controls another 16 seats in the upper chamber because Mugabe appoints six senators while pro-government traditional chiefs appoint

another 10 senators.

Added together, the ruling party was effectively controlling a massive 56 seats in the 66-member senate while the MDC controlled a paltry six by late last night.
Election authorities said they were unable to get results from the four constituencies of Hwange East, Hwange-Tsholotsho, Binga and Gokwe because of heavy rains.

With the exception of Gokwe, the remaining constituencies are traditionally MDC-supporting areas. However going by the trend set across the country, the opposition party might still lose those seats. But whatever the outcome it will have no meaningful impact on ZANU PF’s commanding lead.

The MDC, which went into the election sharply divided after party president Morgan Tsvangirai called for a boycott of the poll, had started off well grabbing an early lead by winning all the five seats in its stronghold of Bulawayo.

But ZANU PF quickly surged in front as results from other constituencies started coming in. The ruling party won five seats in Harare and grabbed several more seats in the southern Matabeleland region, all traditionally strongholds of the MDC.

The Saturday poll was largely boycotted by Zimbabweans who appeared to have heeded calls by Tsvangirai to stay away from the election which he said was a waste of resources for a country which should be directing its energies towards fighting hunger. The MDC leader also said there was no point in contesting a poll that was sure to be rigged by Mugabe and ZANU PF.

But MDC secretary general Welshman Ncube and other top leaders of the party revolted against Tsvangirai and fielded candidates in 26 constituencies out of the total 50 that were up for grabs.

Poll observers estimated voter turnout at 20 percent or less while the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission that runs polls in the country said it was unable to give figures of turnout until all results were in. – ZimOnline.

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