ZESN’s Press Statement.

ZIMBABWE ELECTION SUPPORT NETWORK

PRESS STATEMENT

ZESN COMMENDS ZEC ON RELEASE OF POLLING STATIONS AND URGES CORRECTIONS AND AN INCREASE IN THE NUMBER OF POLLING STATIONS

Harare 10 March 2008 - The Zimbabwe Election Support Network (ZESN) commends the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) on the recent publication of the list of polling stations, which appeared in the Saturday 08 March edition of The Herald.


 This information is critical for registered voters to know where they will vote on Election Day.The ZEC’s publication of the list of polling stations is an important and positive step. However, the list contains significant errors and relatively few polling stations in Bulawayo and Harare provinces. ZESN encourages the ZEC to rectify these issues so that everyone who wishes to vote has a reasonable opportunity to do so on. It would be unfortunate if the problem of too few polling stations in these provinces in 2002 is repeated, comments ZESN Board Chairperson Mr Noel Kututwa.ZESN notes that the polling station information for Matabeleland North appears to be scrambled – with polling stations located in the wrong constituency. For example, Victoria Pre-School polling station is listed in Ward 1 of Binga Rural District Council (RDC). Actually the polling station is in Victoria Falls Municipality. This is just one of many such errors for the province. ZESN encourages the ZEC to urgently print a corrected list of polling stations to ensure that all registered voters know their polling stations on Election Day.Further, ZESN notes that there is a significant discrepancy in the number of registered voters per polling station for different provinces. There should be some variation, but the number of registered voters per polling station in Bulawayo and Harare is more than twice that of the other provinces (see table below). The situation is similar in Gweru and Mutare municipalities where the average number of register voters per polling station is 1,234.8 and 1,277.3 respectively. As a result, the average voter in Harare province will need to be processed in 22 seconds and some cases in as little as 9 seconds (Chitungwiza Ward 2 – 9,281 registered voters and 2 polling stations). The average number of voters should be consistent by both constituency and ward. ZESN encourages the ZEC to increase the number of polling stations in Bulawayo and Harare provinces as well as other urban centres so that all Zimbabweans have a reasonable opportunity to vote on 29 March.

Province Registered Voters Polling Stations Average Number of Registered Voters per Polling Station Assembly Constituencies Average Number of Registered Voters per Assembly Constituency
Bulawayo 313,459 207 1,514.3 12 26,121.6
Harare 766,478 379 2,022.4 29 26,430.3
Manicaland 709,664 1,150 617.1 26 27,294.8
Mashonaland Central 448,477 774 579.4 18 24,915.4
Mashonaland East 624,630 1,038 601.8 23 27,157.8
Mashonaland West 582,989 1,100 530.0 22 26,499.5
Masvingo 699,199 1,202 581.7 26 26,892.3
Matebeleland North 345,264 545 633.5 13 26,558.8
Matabeleland South 342,280 528 648.3 13 26,329.2
Midlands 739,510 1,289 573.7 28 26,411.1
Total 5,571,950 8,212  210 
ZESN urges all registered voters to go out and vote on 29 March. Zimbabwean people should remember that their vote is their right and they should ensure that that democracy prevails by playing their part in the harmonised elections. Ends//
PROMOTING DEMOCRATIC ELECTIONS IN ZIMBABWE

FOR COMMENTS AND FURTHER DETAILS CONTACT
Zimbabwe Election Support Network
+263 (04) 250735/6 or 703956/ 023277140 [email protected] / [email protected]

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