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Implement Electoral Reforms In Full: ZESN

A local elections lobby group, the Zimbabwean Election Support Network (ZESN) has urged government to fully implement electoral reforms needed to enhance the credibility of Zimbabwe’s electoral processes ahead of 2023 elections.

In its statement to mark the Global Elections Day, ZESN said the independence of key institutions involved in handling electoral complains was key in boosting confidence in elections.

“ZESN calls for the enhancement of the independence of the Judiciary, judicial appointments and setting up of a mechanism for administrative complains and time-frame for issuing judgments.

“Other reforms include the need to align electoral laws with the Constitution and implement reforms within a year after an election; the need to enhance the independence of ZEC and other Chapter 12 institutions, as well as making Multi-Party Liaison Committees permanent in the electoral cycle,” added ZESN.

The organisation further appealed to the Speaker of parliament Advocate Jacob Mudenda to look into its petition and draft Electoral Act which seeks to standardize the electoral processes by governing the conduct of traditional leaders, political party funding and establishment of a permanent multi-party liaison committee among other issues.

“The key electoral reform demands propounded in the ZESN Petition and Draft Electoral Act Amendment Bill include developing a legal framework for boundary delimitation; reviewing of the Electoral Act to ensure inclusive participation of all citizens in elections; instituting provisions to regulate political parties and enforce disclosure of the source of funding; incorporation of a Code of Conduct for traditional leaders to ensure they are apolitical; reviewing results management and transmission systems; the repeal or amendments of Acts that restrict the enjoyment of fundamental rights key in electoral processes, review legislation relating to public media to ensure equal coverage of all political parties.

“Other reforms include the need to align electoral laws with the Constitution and implement reforms within a year after an election; the need to enhance the independence of ZEC and other Chapter 12 institutions, as well as making Multi-Party Liaison Committees permanent in the electoral cycle,” noted ZESN.

The Global Elections Day is an initiative born out of the Global Election Officials’ Conference in which election experts from across the world participated in Hungary in 2005.

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