Justice Makarau compromised as ZEC chairperson

The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) chairperson, Justice Rita Makarau remains compromised person as she remains holding another critical position as the secretary of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) putting doubt on her impartiality in ensuring that next elections in Zimbabwe are credible.

ZEC chairperson, Justice Rita Makarau

ZEC chairperson, Justice Rita Makarau

As Zimbabweans push for new electoral reforms ahead of the 2018 elections, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) position is that Justice Makarau is heavily compromised as she continues to occupy to critical positions at ZEC and JSC.

The relationship with these two roles is that as the secretary of the JSC she is responsible for the welfare and appointment of judges.  The same judges are supposed to hear cases of dispute against ZEC where Justice Makarau is also the chairperson.

From her recent statements on electoral reforms, it is also clear that Makarau is under pressure from Zanu PF not to carry out any meaningful reforms that can deliver credible and uncontested elections in Zimbabwe before 2018.

Furthermore, the operations of ZEC are not independent as it has no direct control of its funding as per the country’s Constitution and has to rely on funding from the Ministry of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs.  ZEC also has no personnel and depends on officials drawn the public service departments and local authorities.

The senior secretariat members at ZEC are military and intelligence officers who are partisan and incapable of assisting Justice Makarau in pushing for electoral reforms.

The PDP, like all other right thinking Zimbabweans, accepts that electoral reforms are an important pre-condition to attaining the central strategic objective of democracy in Zimbabwe.

As a result a total overhaul is required to set in motion the possibility of a free and fair election in the areas of, election management, electoral environment and the electoral law.

ZEC is by far the reason why free and fair elections have been part of Zimbabwe’s post-independence history.  ZEC is not independent and has been at the centre of all the electoral process in Zimbabwe.

It remains manned by personalities and characters whose sole purpose is to reproduce the status quo.

Contrary to the provisions of the Electoral Act, the Voters’ Roll and its compilation remains shrouded in secrecy.

Therefore, as PDP, our demands checklist is as follows;

– Immediate disbanding of ZEC and the creation of a new National Management Body.

– Repealing and redrafting of the Electoral Act.

– Creation of an Independent Electoral Court.

– Opening of the media space.

– Continuous voter registration.

– Adoption of the Diaspora Vote.

– Cancellation of the voter slips.

Another Zimbabwe is Possible!!!

Settlement Chikwinya

Post published in: Featured

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