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The Parliamentary Elections in Zimbabwe, 24–25 July 2000

image of The Parliamentary Elections in Zimbabwe, 24–25 July 2000

These Election Reports are the observations, conclusions and recommendations of Commonwealth Observer Groups. The SecretaryGeneral constitutes these observer missions at the request of governments and with the agreement of all significant political parties. At the end of a mission, a report is submitted to the SecretaryGeneral, who makes it available to the government of the country in question, the political parties concerned and to all Commonwealth governments. The report eventually becomes a public document.

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Political Background

One of the main issues in terms of the political background to the June 2000 parliamentary elections in Zimbabwe was the strong challenge posed to the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union - Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) by the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) formed in September 1999. Although Zimbabwe has never been a one-party state, ZANU-PF has ruled the country since independence in 1980 and has completely dominated its politics since it merged with the rival Zimbabwe African People's Union (ZAPU) in 1988. This and other key political issues in the elections have their roots in the country's colonial experience, its achievement of independence after a long liberation war, and its efforts to forge a new, ‘home-grown’, postindependence constitutional dispensation.

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