ZEC Should Consider Postponing Scheduled By-Elections

The Election Resource Centre (ERC) notes the devastation of Covid-19 and its classification as a pandemic by the World Health Organisation (WHO). ERC further notes the declaration of a National Disaster by the Government of Zimbabwe in anticipation of the effects of the virus on the country. While ERC recognises that there are no laws allowing the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) to postpone elections, an area remaining outstanding in terms of legislative electoral reforms, the pandemic as it has unfolded across the world renders proceeding with by-elections scheduled inconsiderate. Conducting by-elections in the current environment where a national disaster has been declared would undermine the potential of ensuring efficient, free, fair, proper and transparent conduct of elections in accordance with Section 239 of the Constitution. An environment of a global pandemic and a state of national disaster is not conducive for the conduct of an election given the need for processes that may require citizens to enjoy freedom of movement and association, all of which have now been suspended.

Source: Election Resource Centre (ERC)