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Tuesday, January 31, 2023
HomeNewsAvoid Setting Up Polling Stations Near Private Properties, ZEC Told

Avoid Setting Up Polling Stations Near Private Properties, ZEC Told

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The Zimbabwe Election Support Network (ZESN) has called on the electoral mother body, the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) to among other issues avoid setting up polling stations near privately owned properties.

In a report following the March 26 by-elections, ZESN called on ZEC to conduct adequate training to polling officials seconded from Government departments as a way of improving consistency in the execution of procedures.

“The 26 March by-elections were largely peaceful despite the tensions of the few weeks preceding the election. Turnout was very low, the number of assisted voters relatively higher in rural constituencies. In light of the observations, ZESN proffers a number of recommendations including the following; ZEC should avoid setting up polling stations in privately owned properties or near controversial spaces, for instance near political party billboards or offices.

“ZEC should ensure that the voters’ rolls displayed outside polling stations are easy to read by enlarging the font used and perhaps adding photographs to the same to allow for easier verification of the persons on such rolls. ZEC should ensure adequate training is provided to polling officials that are seconded to ZEC from other Government departments to improve on consistency in the implementation of administrative procedures at the various polling stations,” said the network

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ZESN called for an improved voter’s roll and also implored the National Peace and Reconciliation Commission (NPRC) and other stakeholders to conduct peace initiatives that will reduce violence.

“ZEC should ensure that indelible ink of the appropriate standard is procured and ensure that members of the public are made aware whenever different colours of indelible ink are used. ZEC should improve voter education on the use of different timelines for the closure of the National Assembly Voters’ Roll and the Local Authority Voters’ Roll. Robust Civic and Voter Education targeting the youth should be undertaken to promote voter registration in view of the upcoming delimitation exercise and the 2023 Harmonised Elections,” noted ZESN.

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