ZimRights launch election awareness campaigns

HARARE - Zimbabwe Human Rights Association (ZimRights) has launched a nationwide campaign to raise public awareness and encourage people to register to vote in the mobile voter registration currently underway.

Last week, the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) launched the long-anticipated mobile Biometric Voter Registration (BVR) campaign, preparing to come up with a new voter's roll for the 2018 harmonised elections.

On the other hand, the Registrar General's office on September 4 launched a nationwide mobile exercise for people to acquire identity documents (IDs), death certificates and birth certificates. The process will last three months.

On 16 September, ZimRights collaborating with ZIFM stereo launched the #10x10 campaign in Gweru's Mkoba 6 suburb.

ZimRights director Okay Machisa speaking on the side-lines said: “The #10x10 campaign encourages each person to mobilise 10 other people to register as voters – these 10 will also persuade their own 10 people and the chain goes on and on.”

Aimed at mobilising citizens to register as voters, the Mkoba 6 launch event was boosted by open air and free performances by star musicians Nicholas Zacharia and songstress Sandra Ndebele attracting an estimated 2 000 people.

“In bring popular musicians like Zakaria and Ndebele, we are actually mixing entertainment and lobbying. It works because these are crowd pullers and on our own we cannot mobilise such a huge turnout.

“We are taking this programme to all provinces in the country and we will be engaging musicians along the way. We have devised a strategy in which all our provincial branches embark on this campaign because as head office we cannot do it alone,” said Machisa.

The ZimRights director urged all citizens to participate in the registration process and capitalise on the 90 day window for those without identical cards and birth certificates.

“Even those who are considered as aliens, we urge them to go and regularise their citizenship because all these services are being offered for free.

“When going to register go with your identity card – even the metal one - valid passport, waiting pass and proof of residence which should not be difficult to attain as Zec put in place an affidavit which has several choices.

“You can go and commission your affidavit form with your chief, headman, school headmaster and at the police station.”

Machisa added that if people do not register, then they will not be able to vote. “People should rise and register because this is about their lives.”

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