Voter apathy fears in as Bulawayo vote registration numbers dwindle

People line up to vote in Botswana's general elections at the Masa primary school in Gaborone Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2019. Polls opened in Botswana on Wednesday as the long-peaceful southern African nation faces what is expected to be its tightest election in history. (AP Photo/Jerome Delay)

ONLY 82 people have registered tp vote in Bulawayo over the two months from 1 April 2021 to 31 May 2021, sparking fears that most constituencies in the Matabeleland region will be collapsed and merged in the 2023 elections as the delimitation exercise is guided by the number of registered voters.

The fear that several constituencies could be collapsed and merged has gripped the opposition MDC Alliance led by Nelson Chamisa, which counts Bulawayo as its stronghold.

Bulawayo based journalist Zenzele Ndebele said constituencies in the region were at risk of being reduced in the next elections.

The delimitation exercise is already underway and it seeks to revise the constituency boundaries for the next elections based on number of registered voterd per constituency.

In the 2023 elections, Matabeleland South had 13 constituencies, 11 of which were won by Zanu-PF. Matabeleland North had 13 as well and Zanu-PF won in 8 of them.

There has been spirited campaigns by the MDC Alliance on the streets and suburbs in and around Bulawayo for people to go and register to vote, but voter apathy is apparently taking hold as residents are frustrated by poort service delivery among other frustrations.

Some have suggested that residents of Matabeleland have since placed hope in other things such as moving on with their lives or crossing the border as one crop of politicians after another has failed to resolve theit concerns.

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