Ayer se celebraron elecciones presidenciales en Zimbabwe, y dada la trayectoria del actual presidente Mugabe, todos se esperan que sea totalmente derrotado. Ahora bien, esto presuponiendo que hubiera cierta limpieza en el proceso electoral, porque todos sabemos la “facilidad que tienen algunos dirigentes africanos para obtener resultados favorables con prácticas poco limpias”.
Tras conocer el resultado deberemos también prestarle atención a la reacción de los diferentes partidos, porque todos recordamos lo que ha ocurrido en Kenia.
Por ello nada mejor que recuperar la tradición de exponer un genial análisis de mano de The Economist al respecto:
“OPINION polls and anecdotal evidence suggest that Robert Mugabe would be heavily defeated if the elections on Saturday March 29th were fair, but few Zimbabweans expect the incumbent to allow himself to be beaten and stand down. In any case, an array of imponderables make it hard to predict the outcome, however fairly the poll and, more important, the count are conducted. But for the first time since Mr Mugabe won power in 1980, there is at least a chance that he will have to go.
One big imponderable is whether, even if he attempts to rig the result in the first round, he will nonetheless have to submit to a run-off, which he must do if he gets less than 50% of the votes cast. If that were to happen, a second-round contest would have to be held within three weeks. All sorts of new calculations would then come into play.
Presuming that Mr Mugabe were one of the two run-off candidates, much would depend on how the third-placed candidate in the first round behaved. If the polls are to be believed, Simba Makoni, a former finance minister who was ejected last month from the ruling ZANU-PF party after challenging Mr Mugabe for the presidency, will come third by quite a margin. One of his confidants has insisted that Mr Makoni and the other main challenger, Morgan Tsvangirai, a trade-unionist who was severely beaten up by the police a year ago, would team up in the second round, whoever came third in the first. If that happened, the momentum against the 84-year-old Mr Mugabe could be unstoppable.
But various other factors could then emerge. For instance, the heads of the army, the police and the prison service have all flatly stated that they would not let Mr Mugabe be beaten. He could call a state of emergency or somehow have the challenger disbarred. Or he could promise to step down soon after the election and, if ZANU-PF still has a majority in Parliament after the “harmonised” elections that are being held simultaneously for four levels of government, anoint a successor to take over from within the ruling party. Or he could try to woo Mr Makoni, if he came third, back into the ZANU-PF fold with a promise of forgiveness and high office, though that now seems implausible.
Just ahead of voting, there were hints of panic within Mr Mugabe’s inner circle. The
Among a string of impediments facing the challengers, the electoral roll, which is overseen by another Mugabe loyalist, the registrar-general, is notoriously flawed. The opposition says that thousands of dead voters whose names are still on it may have had their ballots already marked for Mr Mugabe. In the past week, suspicions have been further aroused by an acknowledgment that several million extra ballot papers have been printed, officially in case of a shortfall in distribution. Mr Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change says that some 9m ballot papers have been printed for an estimated 5.9m registered voters, suggesting that the surplus ones could be used to stuff ballot-boxes in Mr Mugabe's favour. The media has been blatantly partial. State radio, television and the sole daily newspaper are all ardently pro-Mugabe.
Most independent monitoring groups, including all those from Europe and the United States, have been banned by Mr Mugabe, who has accused them of bias against him. But more weight than usual will be given to the verdict of monitors from the Southern African Development Community (SADC), a club of 15 countries, which has endorsed