‘Shambolic’ voter’s roll will affect voter turnout’ 

Source: ‘Shambolic’ voter’s roll will affect voter turnout’ – #Asakhe – CITE

Opposition Citizens’ Coalition for Change officials have slammed the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) for the anomalies found on the voter’s roll citing that they are likely to affect the electorate’s participation in the August polls.

Party officials toured some of the inspection centres in Bulawayo on Tuesday to assess the situation.

Observations from the tour indicated that numerous people were struggling to find their names on the voter’s roll.

ZEC started the exercise on May 28 and it will run until June 1, 2023.

CCC National Deputy Spokesperson Gift Ostallos Siziba said the exercise was affecting the electorate as they would have to move around a number of centres before they find their designated polling stations.

“This is an inconvenience to a lot of people. When I got to my polling station, 21 people had already been turned away because their names were not on this particular list. This shows gross incompetence and gross incapacitation on the part of the Commission,” Siziba said.

“I could not find my name here at Indlovu Centre. When I checked on the electronic portal using *265# it notified me that this is my station but when I get here they tell me that I’m not on the voter’s roll. I have to check on the other three centres. Should I face the same problem there I would eventually have to go to the ZEC provincial office.”

Bulawayo Central MP Nicola Watson also said she could not find her name on the voter’s roll at her polling station and had to go to the ZEC offices where she found her details on the main roll.

“My name was not on the print out and the mobile platform was telling me that my details could not be found. I went to the ZEC office to complain and I found all my details there,” she said.

“What we have to ask ourselves is what is the problem with getting the BVR details and printing an electronic roll. Is it incompetence or is it just plain dishonesty? Personally after looking into a few issues at ZEC I think it is an issue of computer literacy. I also observed that in my Constituency, in Ward 5, four polling stations were done away with and we are yet to find out where they put all those people.”

Meanwhile, CITE interviewed Pumula residents who expressed their displeasure at the process.

Getrude Ndlovu said she had been to three stations already and was being asked to go to another station.

“I have been to three places already and now I’m being told to go and check at the fourth. It is very inconvenient. Think of the elderly who cannot walk long distances, they would easily give up. Who then would vote?” Ndlovu said.

Another resident, Fortune Gosho, said he found the process frustrating because of moving from one centre to another.

“I want to know where ZEC moved my name to. I have been to four stations already and I can’t find my name. Even after the delimitation process, I never went to ZEC to change my address. None of my details changed so how was I moved? I have always voted from this hall but now I can’t find my name. It’s really frustrating,” he fumed.

Maria Luphahla complained that they were changed without any notice.

“Not so long ago we voted for councillor and MP here at this hall. But now I have been to three stations without finding my name. I have to go to another station again, it is so demoralising having to walk all these distances,” she said.

TIritose Zhou, another resident, said he felt this was a ploy by interested parties to find ways of discouraging people to vote.

He said ZEC should make use of television and radio stations to alert people of possible changes and to inform them on what steps to take.