MDM marches in protest against chimoio results

Supporters of the opposition Mozambique Democratic Movement (MDM) in the central city of Chimoio marched through the city’s streets on Tuesday, in protest against the official results of last Wednesday’s municipal elections, which it regards as fraudulent.

Luis Vulande, the head of the MDM’s Manica provincial administration and finance department, told reporters this was the only peaceful way in which the party could demand the restoration of its rights.

On Friday the Chimoio City Elections Commission announced the official results, according to which the candidate of the ruling Frelimo party, the incumbent mayor Raul Conde, was re-elected with 27,733 votes (53 per cent) while his MDM opponent, Joao Ferrao, won 24,502 votes (47 per cent). For the election of members of the Municipal Assembly, Frelimo took 27,761 votes (53.4 per cent) and the MDM 24,267 (46.6 per cent).

But the MDM immediately claimed, also on Friday, that according to its own parallel count it had won both elections, taking 51.1 per cent of the votes in the mayoral election and 52.66 per cent in the Assembly election.

Now Vulande added other accusations. He claimed “we have editais (results sheets) which prove the existence of non-existent electoral registers. We were the great winners in this city, and we demand an explanation for why the results announced are not the genuine ones”.

He added that the sympathies of the polling station staff were such that one staff member even wore Frelimo symbols. If true, this was a serious breach of the rule that the staff must behave in a strictly non-partisan fashion.

Vulande claimed that the police behaved as if they were working for Frelimo, and regarded the MDM as the enemy. He said that the police detained temporarily 15 of the MDM’s polling station monitors, despite the immunity that the monitors enjoy on polling day.

The MDM marched on the offices of the city elections commission and of the local branch of the Electoral Administration Technical Secretariat (STAE). Vulande said marches will continue until there is an explanation for the discrepancy between the official figures and the MDM’s figures.

Post published in: Africa News

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