RESULTS of the constitutional referendum slated for March 16 will be announced within five days after the close of polling, while drivers' licences will not be accepted as a form of identification during voting, the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission said yesterday.
In a Government Gazette setting regulations governing the conduct of the referendum, ZEC said a national identity document or a waiting pass which includes a photograph of the bearer and a valid Zimbabwean passport which shows that the person is a citizen of Zimbabwe of over 18 years would be used to vote.
According to the Statutory Instrument (Referendum Regulations 2013) published in an extraordinary Government Gazette, the chief elections officer would publicly announce the outcome of the referendum and affix a copy of the results on the outside of the national command centre.
The chief elections officer would also provide certified copies of the results to those present if they request such copies.
"The chief elections officer must then immediately transmit the results of the referendum to the Minister who must notify in the Gazette and in mass circulation and local newspapers the numbers of the votes as finally ascertained by the chief elections officer and the results of the referendum as determined thereby," said ZEC.
"For the purpose of voting at a referendum, a person is presumed (unless contrary is shown) to be eligible to be registered as a voter on the voters' roll if he or she produces to the returning officer (the officer responsible for the polling station) at a polling station either a national identity document or a waiting pass which includes a photograph of the bearer."
A voter in the referendum, ZEC said, could vote at any polling station no matter where he or she is resident or on what voters' roll he or she is registered or entitled to be registered.
On polling stations, ZEC said every polling station should be located in a place readily accessible to the public, including persons living with disabilities.
"In deciding upon the location of polling stations, the Commission (ZEC) shall endeavour to consult with interested persons, including political parties and interested private voluntary organisations."
ZEC said not more than 30 minutes before the commencement of the voting at any polling station, the returning officer, in the presence of observers, should satisfy himself or herself that the ballot box to be used at the polling station is empty.
The location of the polling stations and the voting times would be publicised at least 48 hours before the date of the referendum.
Also to be published 48 hours before voting day would be the name and address of the printer of ballot papers, the number of ballot papers printed and the number of ballot papers allocated to each province for distribution to polling stations.
If it becomes necessary to print more ballot papers, ZEC would be required to make a public statement on that.
Observers and media practitioners would be required to show their accreditation cards once they enter a polling station and not more than four observers from the same organisation would be allowed in at the same time. ZEC said the absence of observers at a polling station would not stop voting.
Any contrary behaviour from the observers and the members of the media would result in them being asked to leave and would be prosecuted if they fail to obey the order.
ZEC said any media that publishes false information about the referendum would be asked to stop making such allegations failure of which would attract prosecution.