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Ex Cabinet Minister Condemns EU Funding of ZEC

Former cabinet minister Professor Jonathan Moyo has condemned the move by the European Union (EU) to suspend financial support to the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC).

The EU on Tuesday announced that it will be suspending its $5 million financial support package to the electoral body.

Posting on Twitter, the self-exiled former Minister said such funding can be used as a tool for undue influence.

“It’s wrong for ZEC to accept any foreign funding, the fiscus must fund all independent constitutional bodies. The EU’s notification of its suspension of support for the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission [ZEC] is an unacceptable use of donor funds to seek to influence and control an independent chapter 12 constitutional body, and it is the clearest ugly example why such bodies must not accept any foreign funding; but must be wholly and adequately funded by the fiscus. It is trite that he who pays the piper names the tune,” said Moyo

Announcing the suspension, the EU said the decision came as a result of concerns raised by several international observer missions following the 2023 harmonised elections.

“The European Union (EU) has formally communicated its intention to suspend its 5 million USD financial support for the Zimbabwean Electoral Commission (ZEC) to both the Ministry of Finance and Investment Promotion and ZEC. The project supporting ZEC, which is managed by UNDP and scheduled to run until December 2024, is currently under scrutiny due to concerns raised by several international Electoral Observation Missions (EOMs) regarding the independence and transparency of ZEC during the 2023 harmonised elections.

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“The recent preliminary statements from multiple EOMs, including the EU EOM, have raised concerns about ZEC’s management of the electoral process, particularly regarding its independence and transparency. The EU contributes together with other donors to a UNDP-managed project aiming at enhancing ZEC’s institutional and technical capabilities to fulfil its constitutional mandate,” said the EU in a statement

The EU, which has been a prominent donor, has been providing crucial financial backing to a project managed by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) aimed at enhancing ZEC’s institutional and technical capabilities.

The project was scheduled to run until December 2024.

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