ZEC voter registration blitz underway as concerns over IDs persist




Phindile Tshuma, from Famona, a suburb in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, registers to vote in next yearÕs election using her fingerprints on the new biometric voter registration system. According to the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission, 11,000 citizens so far have biometrically registered in Zimbabwe. (Fortune Moyo, GPJ Zimbabwe)

HARARE – The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) is launching a voter registration outreach on Tuesday during which teams will be deployed to 2,700 mobile registration centres.

The exercise will run from February 1 to 28.

ZEC has released a scheduled of dates when the teams would be at particular centres, and for how long.

This is the first of two mobile voter registration exercises with the second to run from April 10 to 30.

ZEC said consolidated voter registration data will be used in the delimitation exercise to redraw constituency boundaries which takes into account the number of registered voters in a particular area. Delimitation is expected to begin in late August, setting the stage for general elections next year.

As ZEC begins its voter registration blitz, concerns remain over the country’s inability to issue identity documents to prospective voters who have turned 18 since the last elections in 2018.

Home Affairs secretary Aaron Nhepera said Garsu Pasaulis, a Lithuanian company controversially issued a tender to produce the country’s new passport documents, had also been given a mandate for ID production.

“At the end of March, we are going to embark on an extensive exercise where the Registrar General will issue IDs and this will coincide with the voter registration blitz (the second phase) in preparation for the delimitation exercise,” Nhepera said on Sunday.

“Currently, we still have challenges with consumables. However, we are working with Garsu Pasaulis to ensure the RG’s Office begins to operate at an optimum level. We began with issuing passports, and now we will be moving to IDs.” – ZimLive