The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), says it has not noted any irregularities in Zambia’s presidential election.
The regional bloc sent an observer mission for the Thursday polls. The mission says it’s pleased with the professionalism and transparency showed by the country’s electoral commission.
However, Zambian President Edgar Lungu has declared the presidential and parliamentary election “not free and fair” after incidents of violence in three provinces. Lungu is trailing his main contender Hakainde Hichilema in early results from the electoral commission.
Only 20% of constituencies have been processed so far.
Lungu says the Patriotic Front party that he leads is consulting on its next course of action.
Meanwhile, the mission commended the efforts made by the Electoral Commission of Zambia to plan and organize the 2021 elections amidst the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
It says it appreciated the transparency identification process however it lengthened the voting process. And despite the generally peaceful environment during the voting, the mission noted that there were isolated cases of violence.
COMESA officials also called for the allowance of equal opportunity in public media for all candidates/ parties to engage with the public for future elections. Additional reporting Reuters
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