A Zimbabwe court Monday convicted leading opposition figure Tendai Biti of an election crime and fined him for announcing his own results for presidential polls last July, which he claimed he won.

Tendai Biti, a respected former finance minister, proclaimed his Movement for Democratic Change MDC the victor of the contested July 30 poll which sparked anti-government protests that were put down by soldiers which resulted in the death of six people in the violence.

Magistrate Gloria Takundwa ordered Biti to pay 200 dollars, the price of a full tank of petrol or go to prison for a week.

He was also handed a jail term of six months, which was suspended for five years.

MDC leader Nelson Chamisa, who was in court, said the conviction casts a very dark shadow on the country’s politics.

Zimbabwe was thrown into chaos following the elections, the first in the country’s history not to feature former president Robert Mugabe following his resignation in the wake of a brief military takeover in November 2017.