Opposition MDC Alliance says the legitimacy of the 2023 general elections will be determined by the ability of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) to ensure voter registration.
Addressing journalists in Harare this afternoon MDC Alliance secretary for elections, Ian Makone said the pace at which voter registration is moving is a recipe for a disputed election.
“We estimate that out of a possible population of 13 million Zimbabweans 27% are not registered and these are mainly young people. Of that 27% our calculation is that persons that were between the ages of thirteen and seventeen in 2018 amount to two million people.
“Two million people against the number of registered people today is a shame so by 2023 at the current pace no more than 100 000 of these young people will be registered and what a sham elections we are going to have. The legitimacy of our election depends on the ability of ZEC to ensure that the constitutional provision on the registration of Zimbabweans as voters is complied with,” said Makone.
He bemoaned the distant district centres which require citizens to travel and only to be told to come again due to operating system at the registration centres.
“The present registering at 63 District centres throughout the whole country, when you go to rural areas some wards or districts are more than 100 kilometres or long. The expectation therefore is that unemployed youths must borrow money, beg or steal money, board a bus, go and register and they are told we are working with a quota system and told to come the next day.
“Must he go back home and come the next day, he won’t. When they say the systems are underutilized it’s a clear admission that there is no system which is responsive to the reality on the ground and these are the issues that we are highlighting,” he said.
Makone also castigated the Registrar General’s offices for not providing statistics on the people who are issued with identity documents per month.