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Zim’s political gladiators prepare to cast their votes

31 July 2013, 10:34

Harare- Zimbabwe’s three main contenders in today’s polls are preparing to cast their votes this morning at their respective constituencies as a non-governmental organisation call on greater transparency by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) in handling postal votes.

Zanu PF leader President Robert Mugabe, who has indicated he would concede defeat if he loses the presidential race, is due to cast his vote at the political volatile high desnsity suburb of Highfields in Harare while MDC T leader Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai said he would vote in Mount Pleasant in the capital.

Welshman Ncube, the leader of the other faction of the MDC, said he would be casting his vote at Stanley Square in Makokoba, his perceived stronghold.

But as the leaders prepared to cast their votes,  Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) in its handling of the postal vote.

In a statement on the eve of the polls ZESN said the postal vote has been source of political contestations over the years in Zimbabwe’s elections as many people remain unclear about how they are handled by the Commission.

According to the Electoral Act, any person who is registered as a voter and lives outside Zimbabwe on duty in the service of Government or is a spouse of a person on government duty is eligible for the postal vote.

A person, who is eligible to vote, based on this criterion, is required to apply to the Chief Elections Officer after which permission is then granted or denied for them to vote.

After voting the ballot papers are sent back to the Chief Elections Officer and then dispatched to the relevant constituencies and wards indicated by the voter on the envelope.

 “Given the complexities of the postal vote we are appealing to ZEC to clearly communicate to the electorate, political parties and even to us observers, how the postal ballots will be handled.

"This kind of transparency is in line with good international practice of holding credible elections,” said ZESN Chairperson Solmon Zwana.

 - CAJ News



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