Today (Monday) between 1330hrs and 1430hrs a group of about 100 human right activists under the banner of the Restoration of Human Rights (ROHR) Zimbabwe staged a peaceful demonstration outside the ZEC offices at the corner of Kaguvi Street and Jason Moyo Avenue in Harare.
Their bone of contention is that ZEC has no capacity to run a credible plebiscite come 31st July. They further argue that even if ZEC were capacitated to run a smooth harmonised election, the body has disenfranchised millions of bona-fide Zimbabwean citizens because of the flawed ZEC voter registration process which had many bottlenecks designed to scuttle the urban vote.
ZEC released figures a few weeks ago that Greater Harare had registered 27,000 and Bulawayo Province 13,100 voters during the one month long mobile voter registration exercise. During the same period, ZEC says Mashonaland East Province accounted for 70,000 voters whilst Manicaland had 60,000.
This has irked unregistered urbanites who are suggesting that ZEC re-opens mobile voter registration and allow people to register until a day before polling. They are also arguing that ZEC should allow all Zimbabwean citizens to cast their ballot without having registered and that a supplementary voters’ roll should be compiled comprising the unregistered voters.
ROHR spokesperson Mr Kimberley Nyatsanga said they will continue to pile pressure on ZEC to do the right thing. This is the third time since the close of voter registration that ROHR has staged a demonstration against ZEC. Nyatsanga says they will continue to hold demonstrations picketing ZEC and the Registrar General’s offices.
ROHR President Ephraim Tapa declared that the election had already failed to meet the free and fair threshold with millions in the diaspora and at home having been denied their right to vote. He called on ZEC to avoid pushing the country into a serious security risk by owning up to the Zimbabwe people and the world that they had no capacity to deliver a free and fair election let alone a credible outcome.