By Shingrai Vambe.
The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) is set to run another disputed election as it releases conspicuous figures of the registered voters’ in the voter’s roll that lacks transparency, MDC-T Senator Morgan Komichi has said.
The country’s election manager appeared before the joint Thematic Committee on peace and security and the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on justice on recently, where the Chairperson, Justice Priscilla Chigumba confirmed they have nearly 6 million registered voters in the roll.
Sen Komichi told the Post On Sunday newspaper that utterances and action by ZEC points to a disputed election because of treating citizens as daft.
“Already you can tell where the commission is driving us to? Their interaction with the ruling ZANU PF party and the opposition is totally different, this is a deliberate move, in 2018 we went to election with nearly 6 million registered voters and according to figures released by ZEC, only 5.6 million people voted,” Komichi said.
He went further and said the commission lacks probity to run election in Zimbabwe as it fails to transparently execute its mandate as prescribed in the constitution, and engage with the stakeholders who are the electorate, electoral bodies and all political parties.
Harare North legislator, Allan Rusty Markham told this publication that he is going to approach the courts, after the commission gave the ruling ZANU PF party the new voters roll with current delimitated boundaries.
“I received a text message from Emmerson Mnangagwa asking me to vote for him, citing the new Harare East introduced after the delimitation exercise which has become my new constituency. ZEC has given the other contesting political party the voter’s roll which they refused to release even through the court process,” Markham said.
He has however approached the Supreme Court challenging the High Court verdict which was in favour of ZEC.
Media and political analyst, Alexander Rusero told the Post On Sunday Newspaper that there is a margin of error and margin of the teller.
“What is obtaining denotes to issues to do with margin of error and margin of the teller because he who is telling the figures at the end of the day will remain guided or informed by that kind of position irrespective of the fact that some of the mathematics and statics are not adding up,” Rusero said.
“He said ever since registration started in 2017-18 to the current election, less than 400 000 people have been added into the voters roll, which is practically impossible. Registration takes place every day in addition to the blitz, our expectation is that of having half of that number culminating into the new statistical figures,” added Rusero.
Rusero told this publication that the ruling ZANU PF has an ambitious target of 5 million votes yet being conspicuously silent, not bothered by this blitz or registering of voters yet projecting 5 million votes when in the last election bagged half of the target.
“The statistics and figures are not adding up, elections can be won on the technicality of a margin of error but in this case we have more of the margin of the teller, who is deliberately suppressing the statistics for reasons best known to them and not for the common good of the people or the public. Elections, there is margin of error, when the margin falls far short than the expectation that anyone who is statically literate can also do, it smacks much of issues of an election figure that is already being tempered with before going to the plebiscite,” Said Rusero.
Legislator, Temba Mliswa earlier said these are issues of incompetence, he said the electoral body should undergo rigorous and robust forms of capacitation which incorporates present, modern and advanced digital technologies that will aid in the tally of numbers and figures.
The argument that ZEC has brewed relates to the article published by the Sunday Mail on March 26 2023, that ZEC had registered 450 000 voters in two weeks during the final mop-up blitz exercise, the commission also reported that only 50 000 people had registered during the previous blitz and not counting those who had registered to vote since 2018.
ZEC issued a statement that only 5,695,706 people voted during the 2018 election and not all registered voters managed to cast their votes in that year.
An independent analyst into the voter’s rolls, Team Pachedu earlier argued on the figures that ZEC was releasing and instead the commission wanted to sue Team Pachedu for tinkering with the voter’s roll.
Sen Morgan Komichi told this publication that, according to figures released by ZEC, registered voters must be between 6.5 million to 7 million.