Critique – ZEC 2018 Harmonised Election Report

1. Background

The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission has released its report on the 2018 harmonised elections which should be tabled before Parliament in terms of Section 13 of the Electoral Act. The submission, long overdue, should be within six months of the conduct of the election. ZEC has indicated that, in accordance with Section 241 of the Constitution, the report was submitted to the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs in February 2019.

Section 13 of the Electoral Act clearly stipulates that the submission of the report should be within six months of the election and must not only be to Parliament, but to the President, the President of the Senate and to candidates who contested the election. There is no indication that these election stakeholders received the report within the stipulated legal timelines.

A request for the report by the Election Resource Centre (ERC) in March 2019 was rejected on the basis that the report would only be made public once it was tabled before Parliament. There is no provision in the law that places such conditions of making an election report by a public body on a public process like elections available for public scrutiny.

That notwithstanding, the election report now awaiting tabling before parliament contains an interesting narrative of what happened in the lead up to during and just after the 2018 harmonised elections. The narrative is rich in quantitative aspects about the election processes.

Source: Election Resource Centre (ERC)

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