HARARE- Top human rights lawyer, Freddy Masarirevu has embarked on a massive campaign to ensure unregistered youths without proof of residents have the opportunity to register as voters ahead of the 2023 general elections.
Thousands of youths who recently turned 18 years of age are currently facing difficulties registering as first time voters as most of them do not have proof of residents, a requirement for one to register.
Efforts to ensure that citizens without proof of residents can register to vote using signed affidavits are subtly being thwarted by the absence of commissioners of oaths at various registration centres.
Masarirevu said these unfortunate circumstances seeking to deprive youths their constitutional right to vote motivated him to make a difference and help them to register.
“Since the beginning of the February voter blitz I noticed that some youths without proof of residents were being turned away for registering because they did not have signed affidavits to prove that they stay in the areas they wish to register as voters
“I said to myself as a lawyer I need to dedicate and commit myself so that everyone is able to take part in the election process and potential voters are given the equal opportunity to exercise their constitutional rights.
“So far I have assisted over 200 youths without proof of residents to register to vote,” said Masarirevu
Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) voter registration exercise continues marred by controversies including failure by the Civil Registry department to issue out national identity cards to youths as well as distance to registration centres.
Critics have accused the electoral mother body of failing to execute its constitutional mandate in the process depriving hundreds of thousands of youths their democratic right to vote.