Zimbabwe elections

April 22, 2008

Letter from Harare

So many people have written to send us their best wishes and to let us know that we are in their thoughts at this time, that I have decided to write a short analysis of the situation here, almost three weeks after the election. I apologise to all of you who have written to us […]

April 2, 2008

Back to the fray

I spent Tuesday evening catching up with the state of political speculation. At last Morgan Tsvangirai has spoken out in public – for the first time since Saturday’s election – to affirm that he has won Zimbabwe’s presidential election outright. Interestingly he denied reports that had been circulating all day that he (or his representatives) […]

April 2, 2008

Killing time

From Tuesday April 1: Victoria Falls, Harare The rumoured developments don’t happen. There’s no premature announcement of a Mugabe victory… just a further drip, drip, drip of parliamentary results and I suspect they mean to drag this out until everybody is bored with it, in the hope that people lose any will to protest. This […]

April 1, 2008

On the radio

Just stepping in for AJ here – You can hear AJ talking about the Zimbabwe election as a guest on the BBC Radio 5 Live’s Pods and Blogs show. Deborah and Kyle, who also blog at From the frontline, are also interviewed for the show. It’s a great and varied listen. I recommend. Cross posted […]

March 31, 2008

Hwange – Sinking hearts

The mood has changed. When I left Harare this morning, there was impatience and frustration that the results were not being released but still optimism that victory for the opposition was so overwhelming it would be impossible to hide. By the time I got into Matabeleland, the texts reaching my cellphone were getting more sombre […]

March 31, 2008

Exiting Harare for Matabeleland

We woke early on the promise that the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) would be starting to announce the official results as of 6am. In fact it announced one parliamentary seat, Mutasa South which went in favour of the Tsvangirai faction of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC-T) by more than 8,000 votes to 3,000 and […]

March 30, 2008

“MDC is telling truth when it says it has won with a landslide.”

Since breakfast time we have been criss-crossing the city, looking at the results posted on each polling station wall and talking to people who have been getting results from elsewhere in calls and text messages sent by relatives. It’s becoming clear that the MDC has won a landslide victory in Harare and indeed in many […]

March 30, 2008

Live from Zimbabwe election day 2

At 7am we went to check the results posted on the wall of the tent that served as the Chishawasha Junction polling station. Only 236 votes had been cast (they had expected 300, so 64 ballot papers were unused) and 138 of them were for Morgan Tsvangirai, against just 53 for Robert Mugabe and 43 […]

March 29, 2008

Live from Zimbabwe election day

7am – Umwinsidale, Harare Arrived at the polling station, a large marquee in a field between the Redale petrol station and the local police outpost, just after 7am to find a short queue of about 10 people waiting to vote. Loitering outside was a chap wearing a yellow jerkin which read Regional Faith Observer but […]

March 28, 2008

Nation of Millionaires

For a short while today I was a billionaire. I changed US$100 at a rate of 40 million Zimbabwean dollars (ZD) to the US dollar. In Zimbabwe everyone is a millionaire some of the time. I couldn’t have changed more, even if I’d had room in my rucksack because apprehension about the outcome of tomorrow’s […]

March 28, 2008

It’s an Election… but not as we know it

Just two days before the elections in Zimbabwe, Santos still hadn’t decided which presidential candidate to vote for. “Who do you think will make the better president,” he asks, “Simba Makoni or Morgan Tsvangirai?” (He ruled out a vote for Mugabe with an emphatic sideways shake of his head and a guttural click of the […]

February 14, 2008

Zimbabwe inflation part two

Hmm. well, seems my clever bit of maths was wrong. The government announced today that inflation is actually over 66000 percent. Good work, lads.

February 11, 2008


Everybody seems to have a different figure for inflation in Zimbabwe. The most commonly used is 24000 percent, though occasionally one still sees the government figure of 8000 percent. That’s year ON year, of course. I’ve used the inflation calculator here to get an idea of what the numbers should be. Take the price of […]

February 11, 2008

The options as Zimbabwe heads to the polls

Everyone is talking about Simba Makoni. It’s a measure of how sclerotic Zimbabwean politics has become that this 57 year is considered a youthful challenger. But then our president is 84, and most of his closest colleagues are in their late 70’s and early 80’s, so by current standards Simba is indeed the Young Lion. […]