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Zimbabwe's Elections 2013 - Index of Articles
should not assist voters
November 04, 2013
The African Union Election
Observer Mission on Zimbabwe has recommended that police officers
should not be used to assist voters in elections as this might result
in undue influence in the voting process.
In its final
last week, the observer mission, which was led by former Nigerian
president Olusegun Obasanjo said the
July 31 harmonised polls were held in a “professional
and successful” manner, but expressed concern over the involvement
of police officers in the actual voting process.
should reconsider the use of police officers in assisting voters
as it may unduly influence the manner in which they vote,”
the report concluded.
“In future, authorities
might wish to consider the reduction of parameters that necessitate
persons to qualify as “assisted voters”. The number
of persons allowed to “assist” voters should also be
reviewed with a view to reducing it downward from four.”
In the past, the police
force has been biased towards Zanu-PF with Police Commissioner-General
Augustine Chihuri openly declaring his allegiance to the party.
The AU election observer
mission also expressed concern over the high number of assisted
voters especially in Mashonaland Central Province. It also recommended
that, “security markings on ballot papers needed to be improved
(as in some instances, observers noted the poor quality of the inscriptions)
to prevent any possibility of duplication”.
Although the Zimbabwean
polls have been accepted by the United Nations and other international
political players, the United States and the European Union have
refused to accept the results of the elections.
The opposition MDC-T
has also expressed similar concerns and dismissed the poll outcome
as a “farce”.
The party said its observers
had documented cases where headmasters were assisted to vote in
because they could “neither read nor write”.
Zimbabwe boasts of having
the highest literacy rate in Africa.
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