Chigumba Says Foreign Election Observers Must Report To Her Office
The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission chairperson Priscilla Chigumba has said that election observers must report to her organisation.
Justice Chigumba made these statements on Monday during her presser. She said this while making legal threats against all election observers saying they will have breached the nation’s laws if they monitor the upcoming polls. She claimed that there is a difference between observing and monitoring the polls.
In her statement, Justice Chigumba said observers must, “obey every lawful instruction by an electoral officer.” She also stated that they must “bring to the attention of the presiding officer or constituency elections officer any observed irregularity in the conduct of the poll or counting of the votes.”
This means that Election Observers will not be able to communicate anything after the polls beyond what they will have engaged her office during the voting period.Meanwhile, Justice Chigumba’s statement that observers must not carry out the role of monitors could be read as a direct threat against the European Union observers who last week passed comments protesting against organisation’s handling of the upcoming polls.l, particularly the printing of ballot papers.
She said that they are just observers and not monitors. ZimEye in this full analysis presents evidence that Justice Chigumba has effectively placed limits on how far international observers can go in monitoring the upcoming elections.