STATEMENT ON THE 2018 HARMONISED ELECTIONS AND THE POST ELECTION ENVIRONMENT IN ZIMBABWE. The Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission (ZHRC/Commission) is amongst the five Independent Commissions established in terms of section 232 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe. The Independent Commissions are accorded the objectives of supporting and entrenching human rights and democracy, protecting the sovereignty of the people as well as securing the observance of democratic values and principles by the State and all institutions and agencies of Government. Section 242 of the Constitution establishes the ZHRC, with its functions spelt out in section 243. The functions of the ZHRC include monitoring, assessing and ensuring observance of human rights and freedoms. The rights and freedoms include political rights as guaranteed in section 67 of the Constitution, where citizens have a right to free, fair and regular elections, including the right to make political choices freely, among others. In accordance with section 40K of the Electoral Act (Chapter 2:13) as amended up to 28 May 2018, the ZHRC was accredited to observe the harmonized elections. This gave the Commission an opportunity to execute its constitutional mandate of monitoring the human rights situation in the country before, during and after the elections. Through a sample based methodology, ZHRC observed the electoral environment and human rights situation throughout the country. ZHRC monitored the pre-election environment and issued a Statement on the 29th of July 2018. The Commission issued its preliminary election monitoring report on the 2nd of August 2018 covering the period up to 31 July 2018. This statement is therefore a summary of findings on the election related human rights situation by the ZHRC in the period from 1 August to 6 August 2018. 1. Election Day As noted in the ZHRC preliminary statement, there was general calmness throughout the country on Election Day, with voters peacefully turning out in their numbers to cast their votes. 2. Post- Election Environment The most disturbing post-election incident was the violence that erupted in Harare on the 1st of August 2018, which resulted in property such as cars being destroyed during MDCAlliance demonstrations. These disturbances resulted in the loss of life of six civilians and the injury of many, following the intervention of the army. The ZHRC issued a statement on the 2nd of August 2018 condemning the violence and the loss of life due to the intervention by the army and urging all players to maintain peace.

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