SADC Election Observation Mission to the Republic of Zimbabwe: Preliminary Statement



In accordance with the provisions of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Principles and Guidelines Governing Democratic Elections, the Government of the Republic of Zimbabwe invited SADC to observe its harmonised elections which were held on 31 July 2013.

Pursuant to a valid mandate, the Chairperson of the SADC Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation, His Excellency Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, President of the United Republic of Tanzania, officially constituted the SADC Election Observation Mission (SEOM) to the Republic of Zimbabwe and directed the SADC Executive Secretary, Dr. Tomáz Augusto Salomão to facilitate its administrative and logistical support. Furthermore,

H.E President Kikwete appointed me, Bernard Kamillius Membe (MP), Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of the United Republic of Tanzania, to head the Mission. Distinguished guests, as you may recall, we officially launched the SEOM here at the Harare International Convention Centre on 15 July 2013 in the presence of electoral stakeholders in the Republic of Zimbabwe.

The deployment of 573 Observers was a demonstration of SADC’s efforts in assisting the people of Zimbabwe to achieve peace and stability. In this regard, we would like to recall the signing in September 2008 of the Global Political Agreement (GPA) under the stewardship of SADC and eventual formation of the Inclusive Government.

SADC is greatly pleased that the GPA, among its major achievements, delivered a new constitution that was ratified by the people of Zimbabwe through the Referendum, which was held on the 16th of March, 2013.

The new constitution has paved the way for the holding of the 2013 Harmonised Elections to which our Mission was deployed to observe.

After intensive engagement by SEOM with other stakeholders, it is my honour to deliver the Preliminary Statement of the Mission. A final report shall be released within thirty (30) days after the announcement of the election results in line with the Principles and Guidelines Governing Democratic Elections