World News

U.N.'s Ban concerned about Zimbabwe vote result delay

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon expressed concern on Monday about delays in releasing presidential election results in Zimbabwe and called on the electoral commission there to issue them promptly.

“The secretary-general is concerned that presidential results have yet to be released in spite of the constitutional deadline,” said a statement read out by Ban’s spokeswoman Michele Montas.

“He urges the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission to discharge its responsibility and release the results expeditiously and with transparency,” Montas told a regular news briefing.

Zimbabwe’s High Court on Monday again postponed a decision on an opposition bid to force out the result of a presidential election. President Robert Mugabe wants to delay the announcement of the election results.

The opposition Movement for Democratic Change has been trying to accelerate release of the results for the March 29 vote, saying its leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, won and should be declared president, ending Mugabe’s 28-year rule.

Ban’s statement called on “all actors to act responsibly, exercise restraint and calm and to address all issues regarding the elections through recourse to legal means and dialogue.”

Reporting by Patrick Worsnip; Editing by Bill Trott