Seychelles has withdrawn its candidate Alien St Ange for the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) Secretary General post in a move that has left Zimbabwe Tourism and Hospitality Industry Minister Dr Walter Mzembi as the sole SADC and African Union candidate for the top job.

The dramatic turn of events follows a cabinet meeting held on Monday where the Seychelles cabinet considered a formal request by the regional bloc and the African Union for the country to withdraw the candidature of Mr Alien St Ange ahead of the crucial elections scheduled for Madrid, Spain, on Friday 12 May.

According to the Seychelles government, the decision to withdraw the candidature was made in recognition of the need to conform to the established practices governing the endorsement process of candidatures within the international system under the AU and SADC frameworks.

Information gathered shows that the country has since thrown it weight behind the candidate from Zimbabwe (Dr Mzembi) for the upcoming elections.

The withdrawal by St Ange will mean that Dr Mzembi who is one of the favourites for the coveted post will battle it out with the other five remaining candidates.

Meanwhile, Zimbabwe’s ambassador to France Ambassador Rudo Chitiga said the government of Zimbabwe is pleased with the support from the African countries and expressed confidence of a positive result come Friday.

Mr St Ange drew a lot of criticism from many neutrals and the AU member countries for disregarding the African Union decision to endorse the candidate from Zimbabwe as the sole nominee for elections.