Election lobby groups, the Electoral Resource Centre (ERC) and the Zimbabwe Election Support Network (ZESN) have called on the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) to improve and provide information to enable stakeholders to effectively participate in electoral processes.
In a joint statement, the pressure groups said information sharing is important as it helps increase accountability.
“ZEC should provide an accurate list of registration centres and dates well in advance of Phase 2 so voters, political parties, civic organisations and observers can effectively participate in the process. ZEC must improve on information sharing (registration statistics) at the point of registration especially with accredited observers as this helps increase accountability as well as facilitate local groups to know when to compliment the mobilisation efforts.
“Changes to the published itineraries for the BVR kits should be communicated widely to allow potential registrants to know when and where the BVR teams will be at Centres near them. Comprehensive voter education and awareness must precede future voter registration drives to increase turn out for registration and participation in elections.
“ZEC must ensure that all registration centres are fully accessible to individuals with disabilities or mobility challenges. The presence of stairs presents an undo obstacle for this population when attempting to access registration centres. Similarly, ZEC should ensure that they consistently and uniformly track voters’ disability type when possible. This will allow the ZEC and other key stakeholders to better accommodate voters in various election related activities. ZEC should seriously consider engaging an independent firm of auditors to audit the voters’ roll, as a confidence building measure following the controversy surrounding the current voters’ roll,” reads the statement.
Meanwhile, the organisations implored political parties to deploy personnel in voter registration centres to supervise the process.
Political parties should deploy agents in all voter registration centres in order to strengthen oversight on the process. Political parties must increase voter education and awareness to their members so that the uptake of the voter registration process improves.