Professor Jonathan Moyo yesterday said Zimbabwe is not yet equipped with systems that allow for electronic voting, which he alleged could be prone to manipulation.
The former cabinet minister who is usually blamed for compounding misery on Zimbabweans through his unpopular policies, said despite the positives seen in the legal frameworks, a lot still needs to be done in the electoral practices which he blamed blamed on the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC), “an indifferent judiciary and incapable political parties, CSOs and Church”
“While voter registration in Zimbabwe is now biometric, voting is still wholly manual. This is why real-time result announcement is manual, at polling stations. A major electoral reform question in Zim today, is whether to introduce electronic voting, to match the BVR system!
“Electronic voting would not only enable real-time electronic display or announcement of results at polling stations; but it would also enable the electronic transmission of results to and between Zim’s five electronic centers, to expedite the declaration of election winners,” Prof Moyo added.
He noted that, despite the need for new technologies, there is room for manipulation of the systems especially in countries like Zimbabwe which have weak technological advancements.
Prof Moyo said it is irrational to expect changes to electronic systems, with only 10 months to go before the elections.
“The importance of the manual system as the backbone of a credible electronic election system explains why, for example, Kenya’s Integrated Elections Management System “combines both manual & electronic transmission systems to ensure security”. Zim is not yet ready for this!” he retorted.
He however, heaped praise in Zimbabwe’s ‘progress’ on electoral reforms saying they have evolved since the bloody elections of 2000 and 2008.
“Between 2000 and 2018 – with 2013 as the highpoint, following the adoption of the country’s new Constitution that year – Zimbabwe’s electoral system has evolved and undergone major reforms; which make its legal framework arguably one of the most progressive in SADC,” Prof Moyo said.