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Special vote court case postponed as ZEC u-turns on voters’
Moyo, SW Radio Africa
July 17, 2013
View this article
on the SW Radio Africa website
Court Judge George Chiweshe postponed to Thursday a hearing in which
the MDC-T wanted the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission to furnish it
with the voters’ roll used in the just-ended special vote.
Last week, the
MDC-T and its deputy chairperson of elections Morgan Komichi, filed
an application at the ConCourt challenging
the holding of the special vote, citing disparities in the number
of police officers that applied to take part.
The party wanted
the exercise to be delayed to July 20th while ZEC “properly
verified and authenticated the findings on the 69,222 applications”.
It also wanted
ZEC to provide the party with a voters’ roll for the special
ballot, which ZEC admitted it could not supply. However, the Commission
agreed to make available a list with all the names and addresses
of the applicants.
the lawyer for the MDC-T, said: “When we met today (Wednesday),
the Attorney-General indicated that it did not have the details
of the number of officers employed by the police.
was surprising because the last time we met, there had been an agreement
that ZEC would provide that and today there would have been a consent
order indicating a common position between the two parties.
agreed that it would make available the details of all those who
would have voted by special ballot, including the polling stations
at which they would have voted. But now ZEC is opposing that application,”
that both sides are now expected to argue their cases in chambers
Thursday: “I am not sure about the politics behind ZEC’s
position but it was disheartening to see that, because their initial
position was proper and professional under the circumstances.
The MDC-T application
came amid widespread concerns about possible ballot stuffing after
it emerged that only 44,133 police officers are on the payroll,
compared to the 69,000 who allegedly applied to vote on 14th-15th
The party also
asked the court to direct ZEC to ensure that only legitimate police
officers minus retirees, special constabulary or those allegedly
recruited to bump up the numbers, such as spouses will be allowed
court application, ZEC officials said they had no means of verifying
the figures submitted by the police. In addition, ZEC was forced
to extend polling by another day, a move slammed as unconstitutional
by the MDC-T.
exercise was marred by chaos and delays, with reports that ballot
papers were delivered very late at some stations.
This has compounded
fears that the ZEC’s supposed weaknesses are nothing but a
strategy used by Zanu-PF to build a critical chunk of ‘safe’
votes before July 31st.
people were expected to cast their ballots under the special vote
but an MDC-T official stationed at the ZEC command centre told SW
Radio Africa that so far figures indicate that about 35,000 people
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