3 dead, Biti likely to be charged REJECTING DEFEAT: MDC-Alliance supporters protesting in Harare
Three people died while several others were injured during violent protests that erupted in Harare on Wednesday as opposition Movement for Democratic- Alliance declared that it would not accept defeat.
Soldiers fired gun shots, while riot police used tear gas and water canons to disperse protesters that had gathered outside the national election centre, demanding that the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission release real results that showed opposition’s victory.
On Tuesday, Tendai Biti of the MDC Alliance addressed a press conference declaring that their presidential candidate, Nelson Chamisa had won.
He said this was based on results that they had received from their polling agents throughout the country.
His statement led to party supporters breaking into celebrations outside party offices but when the bulk of the official results were released on Wednesday, which showed that Zanu PF had in fact won majority seats and highly likely the presidential elections, angry supporters stormed the election centre, accusing the electoral body of massaging results in favor of Zanu PF.
“We are keen to interview Tendai Biti and Happyson Chidziva (youth leader) in connection with the disturbances,” said police spokesperson Charity Charamba
She also confirmed that three people had died during the violent protests.
President Emmerson Mnangagwa also blamed the violence on the MDC-Alliance leadership.
Speaking to the media on Wednesday evening, Mnangagwa said the party leadership should also be held responsible for any loss of life or property that could have happened.
However, Biti blamed the government for using army against unarmed civilians. He wrote on Twitter saying; “The MDC-Alliance is a peaceful and constitutional body. For years we have fought oppression through peaceful and constitutional means. We condemn all forms of violence and use of the army against an unarmed civilian population. We condemn the murders of compatriots. We call for restraint”.
Bulawayo remained relatively calm though riot police could be seen milling around MDC offices.
Meanwhile presidential elections results were due to be announced on Thursday morning where Mngangangwa is likely to be declared a winner judging from Zanu PF’s victory in the parliamentary elections.