Zec dragged in another ‘rigging’ storm
OPPOSITION political parties and independent electoral watchdogs have accused the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) of attempting to wriggle out of its constitutional obligations by shifting goalposts at the 11th hour as part of a wider plot to rig the July 30 elections.
This came after Zec chairperson Justice Priscilla Chigumba yesterday claimed that they deliberately withdrew voters’ photographs on the roll released to stakeholders last week “to protect them”.
However, MDC Alliance principal, Tendai Biti dismissed Chigumba’s claims, accusing her of misinterpreting the provisions of the Electoral Act.
Elections watchdog, Elections Resource Centre (ERC) said Zec was trying to wriggle out of its legal obligations, saying its claim of security risk was disingenuous.
“The law provides for Zec to release voters’ rolls to stakeholders. Given that Zec has been working on a biometric voters’ roll, the expectation was that what would be shared would be a biometric voters’ roll. Biometric voters’ rolls are known to contain biometric features; a photograph of the voter. When Zec announced the release of the voters’ roll, they called it a final voters’ roll. Stating that it is final raised an expectation that what was shared would be what would be used for the election. In the absence of a clear explanation from Zec on why an Excel roll was shared, it was natural that stakeholders would then question the state of the document shared,” ERC said.
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