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Activists Protest In Harare Against Presidential Election Postponement

The Save Zimbabwe Campaign coalition of political and civil society opposition forces marched in Harare Wednesday launching a new campaign against a "harmonization" of national elections that would delay the next presidential election until 2010.

Under the theme “We will vote in 2008 under a new constitution,” about 100 activists marched through the capital and made noise while distributing fliers. The ruling party has proposed to postpone the 2008 presidential ballot until 2010 to "harmonize" it with general elections in 2010, saying this will save money and improve balloting. But the opposition says it is a scheme to extend President Robert Mugabe's term.

In late 2006 the Save Zimbabwe Campaign staged a “noise campaign” urging citizens to bang pots, sound car horns and otherwise generate noise every Wednesday at midday. The campaign was only moderately successful, but the Save Zimbabwe Campaign has emerged as a focal point for civic and political opponents of the government of President Mugabe and the ruling ZANU-PF party.

Coordinator Rashid Mahiya of the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition, one of the campaign's core civic groups, told reporter Jonga Kandemiiri of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that the latest initiative is intended to put Zimbabweans in the mood to vote.

More reports from VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe...