Pointless to continue with elections without a new voter’s toll – Dabengwa
ZAPU leader Dr Dumiso Dabengwa has declared that it is pointless to continue with elections on Wednesday without a new voters’ roll and that the party was already preparing to contest the election result.
Addressing a Press conference last Friday, Dr Dabengwa, claimed that the voters’ roll produced by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) had a lot of double entries and a thorough investigation was needed. He said without having conducted a fresh voter’s registration exercise and creating a totally new voters’ roll, it was pointless having elections in Zimbabwe.
Zec deputy chairperson Mrs Joyce Kazembe said the commission was investigating the allegations.
“We are trying to establish these concerns and we are already looking into it. Zec has already met with the African Union on our preparedness,” she said.
Mrs Kazembe said it would be premature to make a statement on whether a new voter registration exercise would be conducted when just a few days remained to elections without verifying the allegations.
“As I have said, these are not facts but allegations,” she said.
Dr Dabengwa said if his party had adequate resources, it would certainly take legal action and raise these concerns with the Constitutional Court.
“This is what we have been saying, there is a serious flaw in the voters’ roll and the results of these elections can never be considered as free and fair. We wonder why other parties are involved in these elections especially those in the inclusive Government. They do not take this issue seriously. This is an inter-governmental issue, possibly they have been busy campaigning but this is a fundamental issue,” he said.
The Zapu leader said if Zimbabwe proceeded with elections, his party would contest the overall election result.
“Based on our findings and until we receive an explanation from Zec on these anomalies, we will contest every result even in areas where we had no candidate, for the sake of fairness,” he said.
Dr Dabengwa produced a report on the findings and said a set of 210 Excel.Xslm files were received for analysis based on the 210 constituencies in Zimbabwe.
“The files were password protected and per constituency. From the file properties it was established they were all created on 27 May 2013 at 1.45pm. The files were converted to a TSV file format and combined into a database.
“From the database, we have established the total number on the roll to be 5 875 114. That is females – 3 051 651 and males – 2 824 458.
“There were five people who were not assigned a gender. I hope it was not impossible to define whether they were not male or female. There were 21 103 people over the age of 100. Number of duplicates based on the record ID number was found to be nil. All the ID numbers passed the MOD23 authenticity test meaning these are genuine IDs produced from the Registrar’s office.
“The number of possible duplicates based on a search – same date of birth, same last name, same sounding first name totalled 31 798,” he said.
“Looking at the voters’ roll, the highest concentration of these duplicates is found in Matabeleland and Midlands. It took a thorough search to detect all of these because these discrepancies were strewn all over the show, one could easily miss them.”
As to whether Zapu will boycott the elections, Dr Dabengwa said the party would sit to discuss.
“We will have to consult our council of elders and national executive members as to the legitimacy of polls. As I said, we will contest the results,” he said.
Asked why he was only revealing this now when elections are taking place on Wednesday, Dr Dabengwa said Zapu had been pushing for a new voters’ roll as early as January but was receiving unfavourable responses until Justice Rita Makarau was installed as Zec chairperson.
“We wanted to scrutinise it when there was still time, even today when my secretary called Zec headquarters in Harare to ask if the latest updated version was available for sale, he was told the person who can answer him was out,” he said.
Dr Dabengwa added that the party’s vice president, Ms Emilia Mukaratiwa, had asked the African Union chair, Mrs Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, who is in the country, to engage Zec on the matter.
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