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Published:April 13th, 2008 05:38 EST
Opposition will challenge recount in Zimbabwe elections

Opposition will challenge recount in Zimbabwe elections

By SOP newswire

Zimbabwe's main opposition group says it will legally challenge an order for a partial recount of the votes in last month's general elections.

The Movement for Democratic Change said Sunday that it will submit its challenge in court on Tuesday, and will not cooperate with or accept any results based on a recount.

The officials, including the party's lawyer Selby Hwacha, accuse Zimbabwe's electoral commission and the ruling ZANU-PF party of ordering the recount to discount the will of the people and to keep President Robert Mugabe in power.

The state-run "Sunday Mail" newspaper says the electoral commission has ordered a recount in 23 disputed voting districts.

Zimbabwe's electoral commission has not released any results from the presidential vote held more than two weeks ago.  Parliamentary results show the MDC seizing control of the key lower house of parliament from ZANU-PF.

The "Sunday Mail" quoted commission chairman George Chiweshe as saying ballots cast in the 23 disputed districts will be counted again Saturday, April 19.

MDC spokesman Nelson Chamisa told the Reuters news agency that ballot boxes have likely been stuffed with votes for the ruling ZANU-PF party during the past two weeks.

He also restated the MDC position that Morgan Tsvangirai won the presidential election outright and that Mr. Mugabe's 28-year rule is over.

Meanwhile, Southern African leaders have called for election officials in Zimbabwe to "expeditiously" release the presidential election results.

Regional leaders made the call Sunday following the Southern African Development Community emergency summit in Lusaka, Zambia which ended after 13 hours of talks.

Zimbabwean High Court judge Tendai Uchena has said he will rule Monday on an opposition appeal demanding the release of the presidential results.

Some information for this report provided by AFP and Reuters.