MORGAN Tsvangirai might aspire to be president of Zimbabwe, but he has difficulty with simple mathematics. Yesterday, he claimed to have won 50.3 per cent of the vote in Zimbabwe's election. This figure is vital because it puts him just above the crucial 50 per cent threshold needed to avoid a second round against Robert Mugabe.
But anyone with a calculator can work out that someone got their sums wrong. According to the MDC, Tsvangirai took 1,169,860 votes against Mugabe's 1,043,451 and Simba Makoni's 169,636.
These figures appear in an official statement carried on the MDC's website today, along with the claim that "President Tsvangirai has 50.3 percent of the total Presidential vote and he has won the election with no need for a run-off".
Get out your calculator and check the percentages. In fact, the MDC's voting figures show Tsvangirai with 49.1 per cent, Mugabe with 43.8 per cent and Makoni winning 7.1 per cent.
So on the MDC's own figures, a second round is needed.
I'm not suggesting for a moment that the MDC deliberately manipulated the figures. Only that when it comes to announcing their version of the most crucial election results in Zimbabwe's history, the party cannot be trusted to use a calculator properly. Can they really run a country?David BlairFirst appeared in The Telegraph