MAPUTO, Oct. 20 (Xinhua) -- The Southern African Development Community (SADC) has called for a peaceful elections in Mozambique on Oct. 28, AIM reported on Tuesday.
The Mozambican general and provincial elections should be peaceful, and there should be consensus among the competing forces, the SADC deputy executive secretary, Joao Caholo, said at the ceremony launching the bloc's electoral observation mission on Sunday.
The scenarios of conflict that had emerged from some other African elections should not be repeated in Mozambique, he said.
"We hope that a legitimate winner emerges from the elections, who has a mandate to govern," he said. "We appeal to all Mozambicans to respect the law, and to Mozambique, as a member of SADC, to obey the SADC governance principles."
Caholo said the SADC mission will send teams into the provinces to accompany the election in the final stages of the campaign and up to polling day. "Only the facts verified on the ground, and not just what is said to us, will determine the opinion of the observers," he stressed.
He added that the SADC mission expects to issue its report on the elections three to five days after the results are proclaimed.
On the polling day, the SADC will have 120 observers. By Sunday,38 had arrived from Angola, Botswana, Namibia, Zambia, Malawi, Swaziland, Tanzania and Mauritius. Observers from South Africa and Zimbabwe are also expected.
The head of the observer mission, Zambian Foreign Minister Kabinga Mpande, said that by Tuesday the SADC observers will be working throughout the country, "otherwise our work would have no impact."
Mpande said one SADC member, Madagascar, is sending no observers because it has been suspended from the regional organization following the coup d'etat that brought Andry Rajoelina to power in March.
Mpande urged all the Mozambican candidates and political parties to exercise their rights "with tolerance, mutual respect and strict observance of the law, so that these elections can be held in a peaceful environment."