The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) has announced new dates for the mobile voter registration exercise. Last year the electoral body postponed the mobile voter registration that was set to begin on December 6, drawing criticisms from various stakeholders.
The programme which will not benefit those who would want to participate in the by-elections slated for March 26 will be conducted in two phases – next month and in April.
Briefing the media on the impending by-elections and the 2023 harmonised polls in Victoria Falls Thursday, ZEC chairperson Justice Priscilla Chigumba said the first phase will run from February 1 to 28 while the second one will be rolled out from April 11 to 30
“Ladies and gentlemen as you may be aware, the commission suspended the Mobile Biometric Voter registration exercise slated for the 6th of December 2021 to allow prospective registrants to acquire national identity documents which are a requisite for the voter registration process,” said Chigumba.
“The Commission could not also hold by-elections as guided by the Ministry of Health Statutory Instrument 225A of 2021 which provided that the environment was not conducive owing to restrictive measures due to Covid-19 protocols. The public should note that [mobile voter registration] deployments will be done per constituency with voter education preceding the programme to encourage prospective registrants to participate. The public is encouraged to keep track of the registration itineraries to be advertised in the mainstream media as well as online.”
Chigumba challenged civic society organisations conducting voter education and political parties to encourage the public to visit the mobile registration centres nearer them as per advertised itineraries.
“The Commission will make sure that the information regarding the roll-out will be timeously churned to the public to avoid inconveniences,” she said.
“The Commission [also] wishes to advise that the voters’ roll for the proclaimed National Assembly vacancies closed on the 8th of January 2022 (two days after proclamation) while the voters’ roll in respect of the ward elections closed when the vacancies occurred as indicated in published ZEC notices.”
Chigumba added: “This however does not mean that registration for the subsequent elections is closed. Eligible persons can still be registered as voters as this is an ongoing activity but such persons will not be able to vote in already proclaimed elections.”
Source: Centre for Innovation and Technology