Zec takes control of voter registration

HARARE - The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) is now in control of voter registration after taking over from the Registrar General Tobaiwa Mudede’s office recently.

This was revealed by Zec chairperson Rita Makarau yesterday when she appeared before the Jessie Majome-chaired parliamentary portfolio committee on Justice Legal and Parliamentary Affairs.

The voters’ roll was a serious issue in the disputed July 2013 election and Zec had consistently refused to release the roll, believed by opposition parties to contain evidence of rigging.

Makarau indicated the voters’ roll had been put in place for the by-elections for Chirumanzu-Zibagwe and Mt Darwin West constituencies as well as Chinhoyi ward 15 council by-elections pencilled for March 27 this year.

“Yes, we are in exclusive control of voter registration because that is a right given to us by the law. We will come with our own voters’ roll and it will be up to the people and yourselves to judge us, to say we have done a good job or not,” said Makarau.

She added that Zec had also embarked on a pilot voter inspection and registration exercise for the by-elections from January 26 to February 10 setting up 139 registration centres.

The Zec boss also revealed that for the three by-elections, an electronic version of the voters’ roll would be made available to all stakeholders before the election date.

“We will do everything the law requires us to do including availing the electronic version.

“This pilot project will only be rolled out to the rest of the country after the by-elections where we will be able to see if we can continue with it or we need to go back to the drawing board and see where we need to adjust”.

Makarau said while preparations for the by-elections were generally on course, the commission was facing transport challenges as its vehicles had outlived their service in relation to age and mileage travelled.

“The fleet is now very expensive to maintain due to aging and constitutes moving coffins to our staff though we are fortunate that nothing serious has happened so far”

She also lamented the invidious state of the country’s electoral law as juxtaposed with the Constitution saying it has resulted in Zec facing litigation relating to voter registration.

‘It seems whatever the commission does is subject to challenge. Failure to register voters and compile voters’ rolls as envisaged by section 239 of the Constitution is regarded by some stakeholders as a potential violation of section 67 of the same which provides the right to every Zimbabwean citizen, who is above the age of 18 to vote in all elections and referendums”.

Makarau called for the intervention of the august House to close the gap in the law.

Comments (4)

Nikkuv will help compile the new voter's role.

Khalanyoni - 18 February 2015

this ugly woman is no good to zimbabwe!

Donato Matibili - 18 February 2015

All well and good, but under which law does ZEC register voters? The constitution says ZEC should do this, but there is no power under the Electoral Act.

tony reeler - 18 February 2015

I dreamed Zanu PF now has the 27 March by election results. In Chirumanzu it has 97.85 % of the votes cast, 0.55 % spoilt ballots. In Mt Darwin West it has 91,03 %. Voter apathy was the order of the day here. Spoilt ballots 5.78 %.

Spy - 18 February 2015

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