Mangoma: Bio-metric system not fraud proof

via Mangoma: Bio-metric system not fraud proof – NewZimbabwe 4/02/2016

RENEWAL Democrats of Zimbabwe (RDZ) party says the problem of vote rigging will not be solved by introducing the Bio-metric Voting System (BVS) because the main culprits are the people in the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) who manipulate a vulnerable system.

Addressing a press conference in Harare Wednesday, RDZ President, Elton Mangoma, expressed concern over the new idea of the BVS, urging all political parties and the civil society to give the proposal a second thought.

“We as RDZ are very much against its introduction as it is a relatively new system and not yet perfect to adopt.

“A computer system can fail, and Bio-metric voting systems have failed before like during Nigeria’s last election where the system failed to recognize Goodluck Jonathan, the then President, a clear indication of the system’s shortfall,” said Mangoma.

He added, “History tells that where the BVS has been used in Africa, voting has been extended to more than one day due to technical failures, power shortages being the main problem in most of these countries and Zimbabwe will not be an exception.”

“Many of the rural polling stations have no electricity and are far from any facilities, a computer can fail and with no backup; we should accept the fact Zimbabwe is not yet well versed with the system as it lags behind technology wise,” Mangoma elaborated.

He added that Zanu P and ZEC were more likely going to be in control of the passwords and, as such, would anytime do as they pleased.

“Remember, whoever has the authority to add a voter’s data can change or delete it and none of us can ever detect it,” Mangoma added.

Mangoma said Rita Makarau (ZEC chair) has failed the Zimbabwean people for quite a long time and should either resign or be expelled.

“There is a choice for her to take. We want to vote in a free, credible election devoid of violence, intimidation and rigging therefore, voter registration should be continuous as per the Electoral Act.

“All primary schools should be turned into voter registration centres,” Mangoma said.

He reiterated the need for a proper voter registration which he said, has not been there for the past two and a half years.

“Five percent of the 18-25 years age group did not vote in 2013 owing to Zanu PF’s chaotic registration procedure which omits names of would-be voters and 9 percent of all age groups were turned away as not being registered,” he said.

Voting in Zimbabwe is generally a nightmare for many as the ruling party always adopts violent means to force people into voting for it and in most cases lives have been lost in the skirmishes.

But, according to experts, BVS main advantage is that it curbs duplicate voting.