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Zimbabwe's Elections 2013 - Index of Articles
Lost special vote ballot paper: Complaint against Mr. Morgan Komichi
July 29, 2013
On 25 July 2013,
Mr Morgan Komichi of MDC-T approached the Chief Elections Officer
of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission alleging that someone had picked
up a sealed tamper-proof envelope
with special vote ballot papers enclosed.
Mr Komichi handed
over the envelope to the Chief Elections Officer who has since retained
the envelope and its contexts.
In his narration,
Mr Komichi said that the envelope had been handed over to him by
a person he would not name.
The said unnamed
person allegedly informed Mr Komichi that he or she had picked up
the envelope from a dustbin at the HICC where the special vote was
Mr Komichi further
alleged that he had been informed that this was one of several such
“lost” envelopes. The envelope was allegedly picked
up in the morning of the 23rd of July 2013.
The person who
allegedly picked up the envelope did not report the matter to the
Commission or to the Police. Mr Komichi could not explain why the
person who picked up the ballot chose to report to him about this
Mr Komichi volunteered
to the meeting that the tamper-proof envelope was sealed when it
was handed over to him.
On being quizzed
why he then opened this envelope which he knew contained ballot
papers, Mr Morgan Komichi admitted that he had opened the envelope
because he was curious.
Not only did
Mr Komichi open the tamper proof envelope but he proceeded to open
the brown envelope containing the three ballot papers which he alleges
were marked in favour of his party’s candidates.
reveal that indeed the envelope and ballot papers were allocated
to a voter whose name was recorded on the tamper-proof envelope.
Such voter was
supposed to have voted at Mt Pleasant Hall special voting centre
but he did not vote on either the 14th or 15th of July 2013.
The voter said
when he presented himself to the polling officers, he was turned
away as his envelope could not be located.
wishes to register its concerns at the manner in which Mr Komichi
handled this matter.
took a day to bring this matter to the attention of the Commission
and only did so after attaching copies of the ballot papers in his
opposition to the application by the Commission in the Constitutional
are clear that the ballots were not marked by the voter and cannot
have been marked in the polling station as the ballots do not bear
the secret mark of the presiding officer of the polling station.
more telling, if the ballots had been marked by the voter, they
would not have remained sealed in the tamperproof envelope as this
had to be broken open first by the presiding officer to retrieve
the brown envelope in which the ballot papers were enclosed to give
The story given
to us by Mr Komichi is not credible and accordingly we have severe
reservations regarding the details he provided to the Commission.
We have therefore
handed over the matter to the Police for investigation.
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