THE Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) yesterday said voters would be subjected to COVID-19 regulations at polling stations on election day.
Zec officials said this during the second briefing of local and foreign election observers in Harare.
About 4 099 local and foreign observers have been accredited to observe the August 23 elections.
Zec chief elections officer Utloile Silaigwana said: “As I indicated, from our logistics committee we have representatives from the Health ministry in this committee.
“There are no major health hazards but we need to take care. At the polling stations,you will be required to keep a safe distance, as usual, that’s basic.”
Zec chairperson Priscilla Chigumba added: “People will not be expected to wear masks but there will be provisions for people to sanitise their hands or even the ball point pens in polling stations.
“We have a COVID-19 handbook which was designed specifically for the electoral process by our commission which will be followed. Masks are no longer mandatory in Zimbabwe but there will be sanitisers for anyone who feels they want to.”
The Word Health Organisation has declared end of the COVID-19 pandemic
Meanwhile, a Southern African Development Community (Sadc) election observer mission head, Nevers Sekwila Mumba, has emphasised the need for the country to hold free, fair and credible elections.
Mumba, who arrived in the country with his team yesterday, told journalists that a free and fair election was key to regional stability.
“If you don’t have a free and fair election you are going to be subjected to insecurity for quite a while,” Mumba said.
“We come with a very clear mandate from the Sadc region; the mandate is to ensure that we stand shoulder to shoulder with our brothers and sisters here in Zimbabwe, to elect a president of their choice. Our determination is to support every effort that is going to give us a free and fair election.”