Sunday, July 20, 2008

What is the risk to election observers

It is known that African peace keepers are risking their lives when they are caught between warring groups. Recent examples include Somalia and Darfur. Now can election obsevers run the same risk in a relatively known and predictable confrontations between opposition groups ? For example Mugabe and his opponents. I think it is possible that people like Dr. Berhanu Abebe become targets as they make their stands clear on rigged elections, such as seen in Zimbabwe. I would like to see a full account of the events leading upto the death of Dr. Berhanu Abebe. Could he have been poisoned ?.

1 comment:

Abebe Kebede said...

TIMELINE: Crisis over Zimbabwe's elections

Reuter has a time line on the events leading to the election of Mugabe

March 30 - Opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) claims victory in presidential and parliamentary elections based on early results.

April 2 - Parliamentary election results show President Robert Mugabe's ZANU-PF has lost its majority for the first time since independence in 1980.

May 2 - Electoral body says MDC's Morgan Tsvangirai won most votes in the presidential election, but not enough to avoid a run-off against Mugabe. Opposition rejects the result.

May 24 - Tsvangirai returns to Zimbabwe to contest the run-off after several weeks abroad, even though he says first round results were rigged to deny him outright victory.

June 4 - Police detain Tsvangirai for more than eight hours while he was campaigning for the run-off. He is eventually held five times.

June 22 - Tsvangirai says he is pulling out of the run-off because attacks by Mugabe's supporters have killed 90 of his followers, making a fair election impossible.

June 23 - U.N. Security Council unanimously declares a free and fair presidential election run-off impossible.

June 25 - Zimbabwe's neighbors in the Southern African Development Community call for the vote to be postponed.
June 27 - Zimbabwe goes ahead with the run-off vote. Witnesses say some people are forced to vote for Mugabe.

June 29 - Mugabe is declared the winner with over 85 percent and is sworn in for a new term. Observers from the Pan-African parliament say the vote was flawed and should be re-run.

July 1 - African Union summit calls for a government of national unity in Zimbabwe.


July 1- Dr. Berhanu Abebe died