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Zimbabwe's Elections 2013 - Index of Articles
turned away, forcibly assisted to vote by Zanu PF
August 01, 2013
were yesterday turned away at several polling stations countrywide
after their names were not found in the voters’ roll or for
going to wrong polling stations.
of the uniformed forces that failed to cast their ballots last month
also failed to vote after they found their names struck off the
There were widespread
reports of people with voter’ registration slips, but whose
names did not appear on the voters’ roll and were turned away
from the polling stations without voting or advised to go to the
command centres despite the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec)
having announced they should be allowed to vote. Some constituencies
in Bindura and parts of Matabeleland last night ran out of presidential
and parliamentary ballot papers and officials were making frantic
efforts to source additional material from nearby polling stations.
district elections officer Davis Chiriwo said there had been a high
voter turn out in Bindura North and South constituencies.
hitches, head of the African Union observer team Olusegun Obasanjo
said the elections were held in peaceful manner, adding that they
were “credible, free and fair”.
at Harare’s Town House polling station last night, the former
Nigerian leader said he met Registrar-General Tobaiwa Mudede on
the issue of the voters’ roll and he “could only accept”
his explanation on the controversy raised by other parties regarding
In Kwekwe, Memory
Matandare was close to tears after she was turned away because her
name did not appear on the voters’ roll.
her certificate of registration (04156593F), but was still turned
here at 4am and was in the queue despite the cold, but now I have
been told I can’t vote because my name does not appear on
the voters’ roll,” she said.
a former councillor for the area, Sungai Cletus Masiyatsva, who
is seeking re-election on an MDC-T ticket, also found his name missing
from the roll.
the key requirement for one to qualify as a candidate is to be a
Justice Rita Makarau said they were aware of the problems and were
in the process of investigating.
investigating cases in which such officers didn’t vote because
the register indicated they voted because their names were crossed
out,” she said.
said voters who had been turned away in the morning because their
registration slips did not indicate the wards in which they were
supposed to vote should go back to the polling stations and cast
all affected persons to go back and vote at any polling station
in that constituency. Their details will be recorded in a separate
record if they do not appear in the voters’ roll,” Justice
Makarau said although she did not indicate how this information
was going to be communicated to the affected voters barely five
hours before the closure of voting.
She said by
10am most polling stations across the country had opened with the
exception of a few.
said although the turnout was low in the morning, it gradually increased
in the afternoon.
South, House of Assembly MDC-T candidate Meki Makuyana alleged that
voting only started two hours after the scheduled time following
a mix-up in which his photograph and that of Zanu-Ndonga candidate
Wilson Kumbula where interchanged on the ballot papers.
provincial officer Moffat Masabeya acknowledged the mix-up, but
claimed voting had not been delayed, but started at the prescribed
7:00am. He said the matter was sorted in time before the opening
of the polling stations.
was generally peaceful in Harare, there were reports of gunshots
having been fired at Zaoga Church in Dzivarasekwa where police failed
to control people who were jostling to vote. At Glen View 2 Primary
School, some people got to the polling station as early as 3am.
ready to shape our destiny and that is why we mobilised each other
early in the morning to come and vote,” said a man who claimed
he had been there since 3am.
At Gapara polling
station in Uzumba constituency - infamous for political intolerance
- an MDC T polling agent, Lincoln Nyamhandu, said this year’s
election was a far cry from the bloodbath
of 2008. So eager were the people to vote that at the Goromonzi
District Administrator’s Office, there was already a queue
as early as 5am.
Voting in Chivhu
started on a low note with hundreds of voters complaining of a “go-slow
to frustrate us”.
has an estimated population of 30 000 people, had only three polling
stations which resulted in long queues.
When the NewsDay
crew arrived at 9am, only 154 people had voted.
been here since 4am and it seems the officials are on a go-slow,”
said one frustrated voter. “But we are not going anywhere
until we cast our vote. The queue takes close to one hour for people
to move 30 metres,” he said. At Gutu growth point, over 150
people had voted in ward 9 while in ward 10 close to 200 people
had voted. The NewsDay crew was briefly detained by police after
trying to take pictures of a local chief in ward 13 who was illegally
arranging voters according to their names.
In Buhera West
where former police spokesperson Oliver Mandipaka is contesting,
there were empty polling stations.
a list of names which he was going round the constituency with.
home to Justice minister Patrick Chinamasa who is also contesting,
was littered with polling stations as compared to other constituencies.
Chinamasa is being challenged by Mavambo/Kusile/Dawn’s Simba
Makoni, who said he was confident of winning.
very happy with the situation on the ground. I have been all over
the constituency and victory is certain,” said Makoni.
In Uzumba and
Maramba Pfungwe (UMP), reports said known MDC-T supporters were
being forcibly “assisted” to vote by known Zanu-PF activists.
election agent for the area Wellington Sandi told NewsDay that known
supporters of his party were being “assisted” to vote
even when they were literate and were not disabled.
are being assisted to vote. Some people who are able to read and
write are being ‘assisted’ to vote to make sure they
do not vote for MDC,” said Sandi.
Sandi said he
had witnessed and received reports that this had happened at polling
stations at Nyakarowa Primary School, Mutata Primary School and
At Sowa turnoff
in UMP, almost a quarter of those who had voted by 1pm had been
“assisted” to cast their ballots although they were
able to do so on their own.
At Gowa business
centre, 636 people had by 2pm cast their votes while more than 400
people had cast their votes at Chaparadza Primary School in Rushinga.
and Implementation Committee observers who were not accredited by
Zec were observing the election from a distance of at least 300
metres away from the polling station.
In Mount Darwin,
most polling stations had become empty by 4pm.
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