Thursday, April 10, 2008
PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe's government accused the opposition on Wednesday of trying to destabilise the country by claiming victory in a presidential election before results have been announced. "The claims are basically to destabilise the country," Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa, one of Mugabe's closest allies, told a press conference.
The leader of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change Morgan Tsvangirai has already declared himself the outright winner over Mugabe in the election which was held on March 29.
However, the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission has said it needs more time to collate and verify the votes from the poll which was held on the same day as the public cast their ballots for members of parliament.
The situation in Zimbabwe has become increasingly volatile in the election aftermath with hardline Mugabe supporters launching a new wave of invasions of white-owned farms.
Chinamasa insisted that white farmers were guilty of trying to stir up trouble and looking to reverse Mugabe's land reform programme under which some 4,000 farms have been expropriated by the state since the start of the decade.
"They (the farmers) should not stoke fires, they should not play with the tail of the lion," he said.
"Any suggestion to reverse the land reforms is a non-starter. We will not take it lying down. The intention is to bring about a chaotic situation and we will not allow it.
"They only have themselves to blame for the consequences which will follow." - AFP