SLUG: 2-287404 Zimbabwe Election / Monday
TITLE=ZIMBABWE / ELECTION / MONDAY (S)
INTRO: The main opposition candidate in Zimbabwe's presidential election, Morgan Tsvangirai, says the poll will become a farce if thousands of Harare voters are not allowed to cast their ballots today (Monday). V-O-A's Challiss McDonough reports from Harare.
TEXT: Despite a High Court order to keep polling stations open Monday, Mr. Tsvangirai says thousands of voters in Harare and nearby Chitungwiza are still being denied their right to cast their ballots.
It is not clear why most voting centers remained closed early in the day. The government had earlier said it would honor the court order to keep polling stations open.
Mr. Tsvangirai says he may have to reconsider his participation in the election if the stations are not re-opened.
/// TSVANGIRAI ACT ///
What we are saying is that in the event these Harare voters are denied their vote, then it's totally illegitimate.
/// END ACT ///
Voting has proceeded very slowly in the capital, and only a fraction of the registered voters have been able to cast their ballots.
Mr. Tsvangirai urges his supporters to remain calm, but he says he fears the election is being rigged.
Officials from his party, the Movement for Democratic Change, say their polling agents were not able to monitor voting at 42 percent of the polling stations in rural areas. (Signed)
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