June 22, 2024
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Zimbabwe Clears 11 Candidates to run for President

Zimbabwe’s electoral body has cleared 11 people to contest in presidential elections in August after many politicians complained of exorbitant application fees.

The Zimbabwe electoral commission raised registration costs to US $20,000, up from US $1,000 in the previous elections. Fees for the MPs’ positions were raised from US $50 to US $1,000.

Opposition parties said the fee had a negative effect on democracy as most people earn less than US $300 a month.

Zimbabwe will hold presidential, parliamentary and council elections on 23 August. The electoral commission worked late into the night to approve the 11 candidates.

They include the two front runners, President Emmerson Mnangagwa and his main rival Nelson Chamisa. An exiled former government minister will also run as an independent.

The number of candidates is half that of 2018 after many familiar faces opted out citing the exorbitant registration fee. Zimbabwe is facing cash shortages and an economic crisis that has eroded earnings – most people earn less than $300.

At least 10 hopefuls were rejected, and for the first time in years, no women candidates were cleared to contest. They have four days to appeal against the electoral body’s decision.

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