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Mnangagwa, Chamisa Front Runners in Zimbabwe's Forthcoming Presidential Election


FILE: Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa calls on veterans to play a central role in the legislative and presidential election campaign scheduled for late August, Harare, 11 May 2018. (Twitter / President of Zimbabwe)

Presidential politics appear to be taking shape in Zimbabwe ahead of this year’s elections.

President Emmerson Mnangagwa of the ruling ZANU-PF and Nelson Chamisa of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC-T) faction have begun to position themselves as frontrunners.

FILE: In this Sunday, March 4, 2018 photo, MDC-T party leader Nelson Chamisa addresses supporters, at a rally in Chinhoyi about 140 kilometres west of the capital Harare. Ahead of Zimbabwe's crucial elections this year, the biggest opposition party has been facing some internal squabbles though attracting thousands of people at public rallies.
FILE: In this Sunday, March 4, 2018 photo, MDC-T party leader Nelson Chamisa addresses supporters, at a rally in Chinhoyi about 140 kilometres west of the capital Harare. Ahead of Zimbabwe's crucial elections this year, the biggest opposition party has been facing some internal squabbles though attracting thousands of people at public rallies.

Chamisa also appears to be courting officials of the newly formed National Patriotic Front party.

Observers say it is already clear that Mnangagwa and Chamisa will be the top contestants for Zimbabwe's most-prized national job.

On Saturday, another faction of the MDC-T, led by Thokozani Khupe launched its campaign along with its election manifesto, promising to build an economy to support transformation.

Nixon Nyikadzino, secretary general of the Khupe-led faction of the MDC, says the most important aspect of the manifesto is its focus on the poor in terms of social services delivery.

Chamisa’s MDC-T formation is also expected to launch its manifesto.

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