HomeNewsZec registers 11 000 potential voters countrywide

Zec registers 11 000 potential voters countrywide

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THE Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) has registered more than 11 000 people countrywide since the commencement of the process to come up with a new voters’ roll two weeks ago.

BY OBEY MANAYITI

Zec is using the biometric voter registration (BVR) kits to register voters for next year’s harmonised elections.

In a statement yesterday, the commission said it had dealt with some glitches experienced at the commencement of the process.

“On day one, 761 voters were registered countrywide. This figure progressively increased and there is now a record of 10 999 voters registered as at September 25, 2017. Each kit has a capacity to register an average of between 80 to100 voters per day, so these figures reflect a relatively good turnout,” Zec said.

Political parties have raised concern over the slow pace at which people were being registered.

Zec said the low turnout and assistance during early days was as a result of the electorate being unaware of the commencement date of the exercise, and potential registrants not having proper documents.

The electoral body has said it is training 8 000 BVR kit operators countrywide in preparation of the registration blitz expected mid next month.

Zec official, Collins Munetsi said already, the 8 000 staff members were being trained from various points and the process will be concluded early next month.

He said three people would be trained to man a particular machine and would be working rotationally.

Zec commissioner, Qhubani Moyo said prospective voters must be patient and not read much into the glitches, as they would be overcome during the blitz.

“It is not a race against time, but about capturing people’s fingerprints properly and people must understand that this is a new process and there is need for patience,” he said.

“Some of the problems regarding the duration, which is longer, are not a result of the machines, but the voter. We are targeting 60 people per day per machine and at that rate, we will be able to get to our target.”

The commission is targeting to register seven million people in the new voters’ roll.

Another commissioner, Joyce Kazembe, said the voter education blitz was necessary because prospective voters would be made aware of what they were expected in order to register.

“We have gone into partnership with civic society organisations, who are in the area of information dissemination. They will be in a particular area seven days before the registration. They will be educating people on the BVR process and what is required of them,” she said.

Kazembe said they would bring the process closer to people and the maximum distance they would travel is 5km to register.

This comes as the commission is planning a voter education campaign a week before the voter registration blitz begins once the BVR kits arrive.

There have been concerns over the current registration exercise, which has been marred by many glitches, raising doubt on Zec’s ability to carry out a credible exercise.

Zec officials said they were hoping to overcome the challenges being experienced in the registration exercise and have partnered civic society organisations to conduct the voter education blitz.

Zec is still waiting for the delivery of 2 600 outstanding BVR kits before commencing the blitz.

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