Zec ordered to ensure teachers acting as polling officers vote

HARARE - The High Court has ordered the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) to ensure that all teachers and other civil servants who will act as electoral and polling officers be allowed to cast their votes during Monday’s crunch elections.

High Court judge Isaac Muzenda granted the order following an application by the Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (Artuz) filed on July 11, 2018.

“The applicant’s (Artuz) members and any other civil servants who have been duly seconded as electoral officers and/or in any capacity are entitled to vote on the July 30, 2018 if such persons are duly registered in terms of the law and satisfy the requisite conditions on the day of voting.

“Notwithstanding the secondment or deployment of the persons mentioned in paragraph 1 to areas in which they are not ordinarily registered to vote, the first respondent (Zec) shall ensure that any such persons are able to vote on July 30, 2018 at their appropriate polling stations,” Muzenda ruled.

He said the seconded staff must be given a temporary break from conducting Zec’s duties to enable them to cast their votes at their registered polling stations.

“In order to facilitate the voting of applicant’s members and other civil servants seconded to the first respondent as electoral/polling officers or in any capacity, the first respondent shall take such measures and steps, which include but not limited to providing transport to and from the respective polling stations where each member is entitled to vote at, affording a temporary break from first respondent’s duties to enable applicant’s members or any other civil servants to vote on July 30, 2018 before returning to their respective deployed polling stations,” Muzenda said.

In the application, Artuz, through its lawyer, Denford Halimani of the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, had expressed concern that its members’ fundamental rights were likely to be infringed by the electoral body’s actions of deploying them to areas in which they are not registered to vote.

As opposed to previous elections where a person registered in a constituency could be allowed to vote at any polling station within that constituency, this year’s general election is polling station-based and will be conducted in terms of Section 22A(3) of the Electoral Act.

Comments (1)

yes

CleveRever17 - 27 July 2018

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