South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa urged all Zimbabweans on Friday to accept the election of Emmerson Mnangagwa as president after a poll marred by violence and dispute over the declared result.

Ramaphosa is also the Chairperson the Southern African Development Community.

“President Ramaphosa has appealed to all political leaders and the people of Zimbabwe to accept the outcome of the election and should they have challenges, they must follow legal remedies provided for in the constitution and electoral law,” the presidency said in a statement.

Ramaphosa’s appeal came as Zimbabwe’s opposition leader, 40 year-old Nelson Chamisa urged the country’s electoral commission to release “proper and verified” results of the first national election since Robert Mugabe left office.

In comments referring to the commission, Chamisa said on his Twitter page that “the level of opaqueness, truth deficiency, moral decay & values deficit is baffling.”

It was a different message from President Emmerson Mnangagwa who was declared the winner of the contentious poll, with 50.8 per cent of the vote.

He called for Zimbabwe to unite behind him. He hailed his victory as a “new beginning” for Zimbabwe.

“Though we may have been divided at the polls, we are united in our dreams,” he said on Twitter.

The election was the first since the army removed 94-year-old Robert Mugabe from office in November.

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