Former United Nations Secretary-General, Kofi Annan along with a team from ‘The Elders’ have arrived in Zimbabwe for a three-day trip to engage political stakeholders ahead of general elections slated for later this month.
During the July 19 – 21 trip, the delegation is expected among others to meet political leaders, the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission, the diplomatic community, civil society representatives and media.
The July 30 elections is the first post-Mugabe polls which pits incumbent Emmerson Mnangagwa against main opposition Nelson Chamisa.
It is the first time in over three decades that Mugabe will not be on the ballot paper. The nonagenarian was deposed in what has been described as a military-led coup d’etat last November.
Who are ‘The Elders’
According to their official website, ‘The Elders’ are an independent group of global leaders working together for peace and human rights.
The group was founded in 2007 by iconic anti-Apartheid leader and former South African President Nelson Mandela, they represent an independent voice, not bound by the interests of any nation, government or institution.
It is currently Chaired by Kofi Annan, with Gro Harlem Brundtland, the first woman Prime Minister of Norway as Deputy Chair of The Elders, other distinguished members include Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Jimmy Carter, Lakhdar Brahimi, Ban ki-Moon, Mary Robinson, Graça Machel amongst others.