The Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) extraordinary Summit ended in Lusaka this morning with a call to the electoral authorities in Zimbabwe that the verification and release of the March 29 election results be expeditiously done in accordance with the law.

The Summit also urged all the parties in the electoral process in Zimbabwe to accept the results when they are announced.

In a communiqué issued after a 13- hour- closed door session chaired by President Mwanawasa and attended by seven other Heads of State and Government delegations from the 14-member regional grouping, the Summit said that the verification and counting of the votes must be done in the presence of the candidates or their agents who must all sign the authenticity of such verification and counting.

Reading the Communique in the early hours of this morning before an anxious horde of Journalists, SADC Executive Secretary Dr Tomaz Salomao said the regional body has also offered to send its election observer mission to Zimbabwe which will be present throughout the verification and counting of votes.

In the event of the verification and counting of votes makes it necessary for the parties to go for a second round of elections, the government of Zimbabwe has been urged to ensure that the runoff are held in a secure environment.

He also said the Summit appealed to the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission to ensure strict compliance with the rule of law and SADC principles and guidelines governing democratic elections.

Dr Salomao also disclosed that the Summit has also requested South African President Thabo Mbeki to continue his role as a mediator on Zimbabwe on outstanding issues.

SADC member States at the Summit, with the exception of Zimbabwe, held informal consultations with presidential candidates Morgan Tsvangirai of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) and Independent candidate Dr Simba Makoni.

Dr Salomao said both opposition leaders confirmed that the elections were held in a free, fair and peaceful environment.

However, the two candidates expressed concern on the delay in announcing the results as well as lack of their participation in the verification process of the presidential results currently being conducted by the ZEC.

Presidential election results in Zimbabwe have not been announced 15 days after the elections were held. MDC have since lodged an appeal in the High Court to compel ZEC to release the results.

And later answering questions from journalists, Zambia’s Foreign Affairs Minister Kabinga Pande who is also Chairperson of the SADC Council of Ministers said that according to the reports from both the government and opposition representatives at the Summit, the elections were conducted in a free and fair atmosphere.

Mr Pande said both parties told the Summit that there was no crisis in Zimbabwe but that their bone of contention was delayed announcement of the presidential election results.

He said the Summit was confident that the resolutions would help in finding a lasting solution to the current impasse in Zimbabwe.

And in a Press Briefing soon after the release of the Communique, MDC Secretary General Tendai Biti welcomed the efforts of the SADC in resolving the post election impasse in Zimbabwe.

Mr Biti said the regional leaders had sent a clear message to the Zimbabwean government on their concerns surrounding the delay in the announcement in the presidential results, the rule of law, violence and militarisation.

He welcomed the renewed mandate of Mr Mbeki’s mediatory role in Zimbabwe but urged the regional body to break the quiet diplomacy approach as this would not help the situation in that country.

Mr Biti said the South African leader should deal with the situation with more vigour during his extended mediatory mandate.

The MDC Secretary General said that the party welcomed the outcome of the Summit but felt that fundamental concerns such as violence, intimidation, and militarised situation were still outstanding and described the situation in Zimbabwe as tense.

The Summit was attended by eight Heads of State namely South Africa’s Thabo Mbeki, Edwardo Dos Santos of Angola, Mozambique’s Armando Guebuza, Malawi’s Mbingu Wa Mutharika and Joseph Kabila of the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Others are Namibia’s Hifikepunye Pohamba, Ian Khama of Botswana and host President who is also SADC Chairman Levy Mwanawasa.

Other countries which were represented at either ministerial or ambassadorial level included Lesotho, Mauritius, Tanzania, Zimbabwe and Madagascar.

The SADC extraordinary Summit was convened to identify ways and means of assisting Zimbabweans in finding a solution acceptable to them and all parties involved in the recent elections.

The SADC intervention was anchored on its pursuit of two objectives namely to promote common political values, systems and other shared values which are transmitted through institutions that are democratic, legitimate and effective.

The intervention was also premised on the need to consolidate, defend and maintain democracy, peace, security and stability.

Earlier, during the official opening, President Mwanawasa appealed to the ruling and opposition party leaders in Zimbabwe to embrace the virtue of humility in charting the future of their beloved country that they rightly reclaimed from the colonial masters after a long and bloody liberation war.

President said the extraordinary Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) Summit is not intended to put Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe on trial over the current political situation in that country.

Dr Mwanawasa who is also SADC Chairperson said SADC can not continue to standby and do nothing when one of its members was experiencing political and economic difficult.
ZANIS/MK/CLM/BK

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39 COMMENTS

  1. THE ELITE, excercise restraint!
    here you are the one who will be considered a fool for insulting an elderly man!

    lets be objective!

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  2. #2 Was the word ‘*****’ coined for senseless young people only and not for senseless elderly folks?

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  3. SADC have given Mugabe chance to rig propery to elections

    SADC could have found a better solution than his lame one.it is a solution but not satisfy the anxcious Zambabwens.

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  4. Mbeki has polluted the SADC initiative.We need to recognise that due to circumstances in their country,Zimbos may not be in a position to exercise their right to choose their leaders freely.Apart from that, the economic crisis there has resulted in an exodus of Zimbos in neighbouring states.Are they welcome?There is no rule of law in Zimbabwe as of now.At his prime Mugabe was a galant fighter for freedom. Now,in old age, he is a fighter for free doom and a shame to Africa.Zimbabweans of our time who must take over.’Power corrupts:absolute power corruts absolutely…like it has done to Mugabe’.

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  5. Mbeki has really disappointed us. Im suspecting theres something Mugabe knows about Mbeki (corruption) that has caused him to behave like this. Mbeki, your time will also come, seeing that you have close ties with Mugabe, im also suspecting you’re trying to carry out a land reform in South Africa the way Mugabe did his. Mbeki, you disgust me.

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  6. Zimbabwe Election Commission(ZEC) has said that there is going to be a recount of the results before the first count of results has been anounced,let ZEC announce the first results then order a recount

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  7. Mugabe should bounce back so that you teach the world that we are no longer puppets to the Whites, then after that hand over to a member of ZANU – PF. By all means win Mugabe, hope you ave done your home work.

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  8. Good Job Mwanawasa, This summit will put more pressure on Mugabe. He has already felt the pressure by announcing a recount to cover face. Follow it up quickly.
    Meanwhile let the Zombabwean go on General strike and only resume work when results are announced. We are tired of being take for granted by tired old men who time should be reserved to writing their memos and making speaches in universities and forums to educate the younger generation. LPM you are showing true leadership on this one and you will win at the end.

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  9. Mbeki has failed all Zimbabweans by allowing Mugabe to feel that he has his support. I wouldn’t advise Tsvangirai or his senior Ministers to return to Zimbabwe until after elections have been anounced. Mugabe seems to be able to do anything. Journalists found shot dead, Tsvangirai beaten to near death by police while his bodyguard suffered internal injuries that lead to his death. I mean Mugabe was the man when he appeared to be the new African Fidel Castro. He was the man until he had no more cause. I feel sorry for our Zimbabwean brothers and sisters.

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  10. Dearest Mwanawasa, we are proud of you for efforts made in speaking out for the voiceless and those whose freedom is infringed on. Thanks for speaking out for voiceless Zimbabweans. Remain always humble and God will bless you with a long life…

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  11. That does it! Zimbabwe is in deep trouble. Mugabe thinks he owns Zimbabwe. All those who support him (Mugabe)by saying he fought for freedom should know that Mugabe did not fight the war single handedly.

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  12. Mbeki’s cowardice will do the ordinary Zimbabweans a lot of harm. How can he insist that there is no criis in Zimbabwe? The country has been militarised, people are being arrested, presidential results are still kept secret … Is he waiting to see the Kenya kind of situation for him to notice a problem? He must also go. We don’t need such people in the region.

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  13. Mugabe is an idot. Zimbabwean people don’t want him and they expressed this in the general election which ZEC doesn’t want to release the results. Their economy is in ruins and people are thinking about bread and butter issues which he cannot providing at the moment. This is not about puppets, its about doing the right thing. At 84 yrs he hasn’t got much to offer the people. Someone with fresh ideas is needed. He started the land reform which we all applauded him for but he’s now stuck in 2000. Seven yrs have passed and what has he done to improve the lives of ordinary zimbabweans; nothing. He should go, like Kaunda and the rest of the colonial fighter nut heads

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  14. After reading some of the comments written above, I ‘m ashamed to call myself an African. We like to standby and do nothing in the face of wrong deeds. Durfar people are Africans being killed by Arabs and we are watching. Kenyans were slaughtering themselves and that’s when we wanted to act. Zimbabwe is in crisis and punks are claiming their is no crisis. What is wrong with us? Mugabe should not be allowed to cling on to power like we acquiesced with his old Kenyan counterpart. When people are tired of you, leave honourably. SADC should have sent a stronger message. We need not to deal with Mugabe until results are released. Ties should be servered including diplomatic ties until results are

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  15. How ironic for Thabo to say there is no crisis in Zim. Where on earth has he ever heard of election petition or vote recount without releasing election results? What results is Mugabe contesting when the results have not been released. It is a shame to SADC for putting trust and thinking Thabo could help resolve the Zim crisis. No wonder he has been trying to cling to the ANC presidency by hounding Zuma. You can plainly see where he gets his advice from!

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  16. That SADC meeting in Lusaka will go down the annuls of history as the most shameful and completely useless indabas of all times. Thabo Mbeki should never have been invited because he clearly polluted the atmosphere with Mugaboxide that comatozed most of the SADC presidents blurring them from steering Zimbabwe away from the edge of the abyss Mugabe has stirred it to. History will judge Mbeki harshly and rightly so, his ingratitude to common Africans who like Zimbabweans who unchained him from the york of Apartheid stinks right to the very heavens above. Today was one of the saddest days for Africa, it marked the day Zimbabwe broke apart.

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  17. Sad turn of events indeed!
    Where is Prof Mutengo Waminga LLB (UNZA) LLM, MA PHD (Oxford)…Your fans are missing your input.

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  18. SADC has betrayed Zimbos (Mbeki is the biggest culprit). Zimbabweans need to realise that Mugabe understands one thing.. violence. Zimbabweans have to violently remove the *****! Even taking up arms should be considered if necessary!

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  19. I strongly think, the SADC resolve is a good starting point. What follows next should clear all contentious issues.

    Lets see if Mugabe will welcome SADC election results monitors.

    In all, the Zimbabwe Problem is now, atleast as of now, in the hands of the Zimbabweans themselves to solve it amicably in-lieu of running to neighbours. But, Zimbabweans we assure you that we are watching.

    My President, of the Republic of Zambia, has shown that we do care and we are with you in this issue. We will certainly help out, where we can.

    All the very best in resolving this Problem.

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  20. SADC has betrayed Zimbos (Mbeki is the biggest culprit). Zimbabweans need to realise that Mugabe understands one thing.. violence. Zimbabweans have to remove the ***** violently! Taking up arms should be considered now.

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  21. Zimbabweans must face it . Mugabe understands nothing except gunfire. That is their only option!

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  22. Hands down and RESPECT to Levy. He set the ball rolling. Once again we as Zambia find ourselves helping people WHO DONT APPRECIATE, the Zimbabweans. Zambian lives were lost for their cause(ALICK NKHATA ETC) As soon as they got independence on 18th April 1980, the Zezulus from Zambia went back to Zim and forgot OUR HOSPITALITY, zambian traders were being called names in Zim.Those of us who travel will tell you how the Zezulus used to give us hell. LETS HELP THEM THOUGH THEY FORGET VERY FAST.
    Mbeki is a pain in the ass. He is the type same as Mugabe, he also does not want to leave the ANC presidency to young ones.
    Levy, you have done us proud for showing the world that ZAMBIANS CARE.

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  23. On another note, I just want to make mention that somw people like me, a 100% Zedian, have been directly affected by the Zimbabwean Problem. We have had to help out Zimbabweans and we are still helping them now – even though we are far from Zimbabwe and our country Zambia. Our government has tried to help the economic refugees from Zimbabwe for some time now. I think this is good time for the environment to be made better in Zimbabwe so that our neighbour can enjoy themselves freely at their home.
    This written, I feel that my President – of the Republic of Zambia – is doing a great job to remove some of the LOAD we have been carrying on our shoulders for the Zimbabwaen colleague(s)’s sake.

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  24. It is clear that Mbeki has some self interest in keeping Mugabe in power but I just dont understand what it is. Can someone please explain to me, what does Mbeki gain from supporting Mugabe? As far as I can see, South Africa is losing money and losing face by supporting Mugabe. Why does he do it?

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  25. BA #30 CANADIAN
    Zambia is powerless against Zimbabwe. The most powerful man in the SADC region (Mbeki) who controls the most powerful economy in Africa is on Mugabe’s side. As long as Mbeki is on Mugabe’s side, basically Mugabe can do whatever he wants because he has the most powerful economy in Africa backing him up. Zambia is not influential in the SADC region because its economy does not hold any power. Its up to Mbeki to swallow his pride and do something otherwise after Mugabe is gone, Mbeki will be given an even bigger pill to swallow.

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  26. Nothing LASTS forever, thie crisis in Zimbabwe will end, but when? Mugabe is pushing himself to a brick wall!!

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  27. Chi Mbeki, what a leader! he goes into Zim Talks to Mugabe and they host a press briefing telling us at their is no crisis ….later on he flies into Lusaka and drags the closed session into disripute!!!! if you listerned to Chuchus remarks, he made it clear that their is a problem in Zim which needed our attention. But guess what the communica just read release the elections after 8 hrs of deliberations………we know that Mbeki is stupid now.just confirmed after the loss to Zuma

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  28. If Mugabe cant listen to Brown or Bush, you honestly think SADC matters to him? He will just declare himself the winner..kaput!

    Only the military can rescue Zim at the moment.

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  29. Bheki is a denialist.Even here in SA pipo know that.He refused to acknowledge AIDS/HIV problem until its in crisis mode now.He is stubborn period, as much as intellegent.He does not want MDC and as mediator he should be very neutral.

    Secondly, I’m proud to be zedian 100% too, coz at least we will b remembered as a pipo who cared for our fellow africans.We helped ANC, ZAPU, etc in their time of hopelessness. And now we were the 1st to show concern.Zed forever … Bigups to LPM.

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  30. It’s not worthy it belonging to SADC…coz it’s a very useless and toothless grouping!!what the hell are we still doing as Zambians in this boat?Mbeki is a close friend to mugabe and they laugh in the backgrounds….To the West and the International Community,we all know these problems were caused by you!Mugabe could be riht in his own way after the treatemnt he got form Ian smith…

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  31. I’m not intelligent enough to comment…that’s why somebody copid and pasted my name and posted this. Mwe bantu, priz, I’m also a people….haha, the guy makes me laugh!!!

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  32. The motto on the SADC logo is a joke if this is the “Common future” the region is marching towards to! President Muwelewele has no business presiding over this charade since he is similarly a beneficiary of two fraudulent elections.

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