Eleven candidates will run in Zimbabwe’s presidential election next August, the electoral commission announced on Thursday.
Several candidates were disqualified after failing to raise the $20,000 needed to run, including the only female candidate, Linda Masarira.
“I have been clear that the $20,000 is exorbitant, it is discriminatory in nature and violates the section that speaks to non-discrimination in the eyes of the law,” Masarira said.
Zimbabweans head to the polls on August 23.
The election is likely to pit Incumbent Emmerson Mnangagwa, of the ZANU-PF party, against pastor and lawyer Nelson Chamisa of the Citizens Coalition for Change.
In addition to the two main contenders, independent candidate Saviour Kasukuwere, a former minister in Robert Mugabe’s cabinet, is expected to attract votes in ZANU-PF strongholds.
Mnangagwa is seeking a second term amid Zimbabwe’s economic turmoil. The Zimbabwean dollar fell more than 50% this month against the U.S. dollar.
“The process is going very, very well, and I’m happy that Zimbabwe is now a mature democracy,” Mnangagwa told reporters on Wednesday.
“This process is so peaceful. This is what we want and should continue now during the process of campaigning, during the elections, post elections,” the president said.
The opposition, however, have criticised the steep hikes in candidacy fees for the presidential elections, which have leapt from $1,000 in 2018 to $20,000 today.
Source : Africanews