Elections remain banned: Zec
THE Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) has said electoral activities remain banned following the introduction of lockdown measures by the government to curb the spread of the coronavirus (Covid-19).
According to a statement issued by Zec chief elections officer Utoile Silaigwana, the Commission will come up with an electoral practice policy.
“The Commission would like to remind the public that those electoral activities that require gatherings remain suspended to avoid violating lockdown measures currently in place,” Silaigwana said.
He further said this was in line with a Covid-19 electoral practice policy that will guide all the key stakeholders on how to conduct themselves during the holding of elections in this era of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The Commission would like to advise its stakeholders to be patient while it finalises a draft on the Covid-19 Electoral Practice Policy that will guide electoral staff, the electorate and other stakeholders on how to conduct themselves before, during and after electoral processes to avoid contracting the novel coronavirus.
“The policy will also clearly spell out activities that will be conducted by the Commission during the current level 2 lockdown period. It is important to note that before the policy is implemented, stakeholders shall be consulted in the spirit of transparency and inclusivity,” he said.
He said the suspensions of by-elections and other electoral activities was done in compliance with executive presidential powers invoked as a result of global Covid-19 pandemic.
“It therefore follows that the by-elections were suspended in terms of the Covid-19 regulations and not in terms of the Electoral Act and its stipulated timeframes as some sections of society would like to believe.
“Again, it should be noted that by-elections were suspended and not postponed which means that they will be conducted when lockdown restrictions have been relaxed to allow such activities to resume without posing a danger to the health of those involved,” Silaigwana said.