Saturday, 17 March 2018

MUTSVANGWA, CHIGUMBA TO OBSERVE RUSSIAN POLLS

A three-member delegation led by Special Advisor to the President, Ambassador Christopher Mutsvangwa, has been dispatched to observe Russia’s Presidential elections that will be held today, a move which analysts say signals the country’s re-entry into world affairs.

With Ambassador Mutsvangwa on the mission are Zimbabwe Electoral Commission chair Justice Priscilla Chigumba, and Chair of the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Foreign Affairs, Industry and International Trade, Cde Kindness Paradza.

The delegation arrived here on Friday and joined other international observers following an invitation from Russia.

The United States and its Nato allies have been barred by the Russian government from monitoring the election.

Incumbent President Vladmir Putin will battle it out with seven other aspirants.
According to opinion polls, President Putin is expected to comfortably win the race with about 80 percent of the vote.

President Putin is contesting the elections as an independent candidate and is riding on the 
back of a popular military intervention in Syria, which bolsters the image he has created of a post-Cold War Russia that demands respect on the international arena.

His candidature has been endorsed by the governing United Russia party. United Russia controls the State Duma (Parliament) following September 2016’s overwhelming electoral victory.

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