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Mnangagwa says Zim elections 'nearer than what you expect'

On Thursday, Emmerson Mnangagwa told the Zanu-PF central committee that those elections will be credible, free and fair.

Zimbabwean new interim President Emmerson Mnangagwa (L) gives an address after he is officially sworn-in during a ceremony in Harare on 24 November 2017. Picture: AFP.

HARARE - Zimbabwe president Emmerson Mnangagwa has hinted that next year’s elections scheduled for July or August may be held sooner than expected.

The president was speaking at a party meeting ahead of the annual congress on Friday.

Friday’s congress will confirm Mnangagwa as the ruling party president and its candidate in next year’s polls.

On Thursday, Mnangagwa told the Zanu-PF central committee that those elections will be credible, free and fair.

He also said the polls were “nearer than what you expect”, leaving some wondering if he plans to call an early election.

That could prove beneficial to Zanu-PF, which is still basking in the glow of last month’s popular removal of Robert Mugabe as president.

But experts say the earliest legal date for elections is late July unless members of parliament pass a resolution to dissolve parliament.