ZEC deputy chairperson, Commissioner Rodney Simukai Kiwa said the meeting was important because that was the first in a series of arranged meetings to be conducted for the purpose of engaging stakeholders on the forthcoming delimitation.
“As you may be aware our general elections are scheduled for next year and prior to their conduct we are required by law to conduct a delimitation exercise for electoral boundaries.
“The elections are legal rather than logical activities and it is therefore important to be seen fulfilling the provisions of the law that we set for ourselves as citizens of this country,” he said.
Comm Kiwa said Section 161 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe obliges the commission to conduct delimitation of the electoral boundaries once every ten years soon after the conduct of a population census.
“The Electoral Act under section 213 requires that delimitation be taken openly, transparently and consultatively to enable those who will be affected by the decisions the commission will make to have to say during its processes,” he said.
Comm Kiwa said the process will entail the consultation of voters, political parties and other stakeholders.
ZEC has conducted phase 1 and 2 of its mobile voter registration which it concluded in the months of February and April 2022.
“Please take note that this does not signal the beginning of the delimitation exercise as the law binds the commission to conduct delimitation exercise soon after the conclusion of a population census.
“This meeting is therefore designed to raise awareness on the pending delimitation and the series of activities that will be undertaken of course in the preparation and during the actual activity,” he said.
Comm Kiwa said the commission and its stakeholders ought to be on the same level in order for all to take ownership of the exercise.
“The objectives of this meeting are therefore to appraise you and stakeholders on the pending delimitation, brief you on the provisions of the law in respect to the delimitation and the link between census and delimitation and to brief you on the mobile voter registration conducted by the commission, for stakeholders to inform the public to continue to register to vote at the commission in the 10 provincial and 63 district offices in preparation for the delimitation.”
“We also to encourage the media to report from an informed point of view and finally highlight the importance of gender mainstreaming in all electoral processes,” he said.
Comm Kiwa said the commencement of the delimitation will be signified by the publication of a notice in the Government Gazette by the commission of its inclusion to start activity and in line with the provisions of the electoral law.
“The anticipated outcome of this meeting together with the scheduled meetings with other stakeholders will therefore result in a shared vision on the delimitation, a clear understanding of the link between voter registration and the delimitation, knowledge of gender mainstreaming in elections and establishment of a working relationship between ZEC and its stakeholders at all levels.
ZEC chief elections officer Mr Utloile Silaigwana speaking at the same occasion said as we may know our country is preparing for 2023 general elections next year and that the general election is going to be preceded by the delimitation of constituencies and wards to prepare for fair representation in the provinces.
“ZEC has restored this mandate by the constitution of Zimbabwe and it takes seriously the issue of engagement in these very important national programmes.” – Daily Mirror NewsPost published in: Featured