Unchecked voters roll risks duplicate voting

Two days before the election, civil society groups are questioning the integrity of the final voters roll based on doubt as to whether ZEC conducted a full de-duplication of the entire voters roll. If ZEC failed to conduct a comprehensive de-duplication exercise it creates the risk of multiple voting and people voting with fake identity documents.

Biometric systems have been introduced to provide a unique identification for each voter. The Automatic Finger Print Identification System (AFIS) was explicitly procured to identify and eliminate the possibility of duplicate entries. For this to work, every entry on the register must be checked against every other voter entry.

To increase confidence in the electoral process ZEC needs to confirm and reassure voters that the AFIS system has been run against every single voter entry to clearly identify and eliminate duplicates.

Doubts about the integrity of the roll are further compounded by the late release of the final voters roll. The SADC Observation Mission from 2013 noted the failure to release the voters roll timeously and recommended for future elections that political parties be told of any technical difficulties in the release of the roll.

It is most unfortunate that yet again the final roll was only made available 96 hours before election day leaving insufficient time for it to be analysed by political parties and independent groups.

Recommendations

ESR calls upon ZEC:

  1. To issue an unequivocal assurance that they ran the AFIS on the entire final roll
  2. To expeditiously release the results of the completed AFIS deduplication exercise
  3. To release the computer logs that validate the results of the AFIS on the entire final voters roll

About the ESR

The Election Situation Room was convened by the Zimbabwe Election Support Network. The ESR provides a platform for effective citizen monitoring and domestic observation of electoral processes, where key stakeholders and the general public can feed information and receive timely updates on key electoral processes. To achieve this, more than 40 organizations drawn from across the country and from different sectors have come together under the banner of the Election Situation Room. It has a Steering Committee that provides guidance and leadership to the ESR. The members of the Steering Committee are: ZESN, ERC, CSU, ZPP, Heal Zimbabwe Trust, NASCOH, NAYO, Habakkuk Trust, Zimbabwe Christian Alliance, ZLHR, and the Women’s Coalition of Zimbabwe.

For more information, contact the Election Situation Room on the following details:

Contact mobile: 0782092799
Website: zimelectionsituationroom.org
Facebook: ZimelectionsituationRoom
Twitter: @ElectionRoom
SMS/WhatsApp: 0774767556 and 0771514292

Source: Election Situation Room