Britain has told Zimbabwe President Emmerson Mnangagwa and Foreign Minister Sibusiso Moyo that the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission but be neutral and enjoy the confidence of all parties contesting the coming elections, Minister of State Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon told the House of Lords yesterday.
Asked by Lord Steel of Aikwood what representations the government had made to Zimbabwe to ensure that the electoral commission is genuinely independent to the forthcoming elections, Lord Ahmad said: “The Foreign Secretary met Zimbabwean Foreign Minister Sibusiso Moyo on 20 April and our Ambassador met President Mnangagwa on 5 May to discuss Zimbabwe’s upcoming elections.
“At these meetings, we were clear that the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) must be neutral and enjoy the confidence of all parties contesting the elections.
“While we welcome the appointment of a new ZEC Chair, the organisation must be scrupulously impartial and ensure it deals with all stakeholders equally.”
Britain says it will observe this year’s elections now widely expected in July as a member of the European Commission.
Although Britons voted to quit the EU in 2016, they will only do so next year.
Britain has been accused by the Zimbabwe opposition of backing Mnangagwa.
Former Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe accused Britain of supporting the opposition.