Former Ghanaian President John Dramani Mahama will lead the Commonwealth Observer Mission to cover the Zimbabwean elections.
This was announced by the Commonwealth Secretariat in the United Kingdom.
The secretariat, in a statement by its Media Division, said Secretary-General, Patricia Scotland, would deploy Mahama to lead other eminent persons from across the regions of Commonwealth.
The election is expected to come off on July 30. Zimbabwe is not a member of the Commonwealth. It withdrew from the organisation in 2003 after it was suspended for being in breach of the Harare Declaration
The observation group’s report on the election would contribute to the Commonwealth Secretary-General’s informal assessment of whether Zimbabwe should be readmitted, the Secretariat said.
“Its report on the electoral process will give member countries a clear view of adherence to Commonwealth values in Zimbabwe, including democracy and rule of law plus protection of human rights such as freedom of expression”, she said.
“Our heads of government have said twice, in 2009 and 2011 that they look forward to Zimbabwe’s return.”
John Mahama after his ousting as President of Ghana has engaged in similar missions in Kenya, the Gambia and Sierra Leone.
The Observer Group would arrive in Zimbabwe on July 23 and would be supported by a nine-member staff team from the Commonwealth Secretariat, led by Katalaina Sapolu, Director of the Governance and Peace Directorate.