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Friday, May 24, 2024

ZEC opens door for election observers

Story by Wellington Makonese

The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) has stepped up preparations for general elections set for the 23rd of August after opening the door for the accreditation of election observers and the media.

The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) has laid down ground rules for the accreditation of local and international observers for the general elections, with the accreditation window open until the 18th of August.

ZEC Deputy Chairperson, Ambassador Rodney Kiwa said the setting up of statutory committees is the first step to ensure transparency.

“There is a statutory committee that has ZEC, Foreign Affairs and Home Affairs officials, and other partners a committee that all the local and foreign observers should channel their applications for consideration, it is important for our stakeholders to note that applications should be in by 18th of August 2023 at the latest.

“We have the ZEC and other organs, their importance is to check the performance of the media, Section 160 (g) to 160 (j) in the Electoral Acts compels the media to act equitably, in particular ZBC and other electronic platforms. They are requested kindly to furnish schedules soon after the nomination processes have been completed. This will enable ZEC to monitor compliance,” he said.

ZEC also cited the professional conduct of the media as critical for a transparent and peaceful election.

“The private media are not compelled to provide information, but once they decide to do so they should do so equitably in terms of the law, if they decide to advertise, no one should be denied access. Media should abide by Statutory Instrument 33 of 2008 requires us to desist from fermenting electoral violence, hate speech and slander and reporting sensationally.”

Zimbabwe has a rich history of accommodating local, foreign observers and the media for transparency purposes during elections.

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