23 March 2018

Zimbabwe: 'Disband Compromised Zim Electoral Body and Allow UN to Supervise Vote,' Govt Told

Zimbabwe's trade union umbrella body has reportedly called on government to "disband" the country's electoral body, the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC), and "allow the United Nations to supervise" the upcoming general elections.

According to New Zimbabwe.com, the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU), said this following the recent trip to Russia by ZEC's chairperson Justice Priscilla Chigumbu in the company of President Emmerson Mnangagwa's special advisor Chris Mtsvangwa.

The trip was meant to "observe" the eastern European country's just ended presidential election.

But, the ZCTU's secretary general Japhet Moyo expressed concern, saying that the trip had since compromised the credibility of the forthcoming elections.

"This (trip) vindicates all those who have always said that ZEC is not independent. This incident reinforces the call to disband it (ZEC) and, in the meantime, allow the UN to supervise the elections. That incident puts the electoral commission in a very compromised situation in terms of its neutrality," Moyo was quoted as saying.

Electoral reforms

Moyo said the credibility of the country's election was not guaranteed after the head of ZEC went on an official trip with a member of a contesting party.

This came as opposition parties were calling for electoral reforms.

Several opposition parties under the banner of Zimbabwe National Electoral Reform Agenda last year vowed to hold protests if government did not insitute reforms.

Some of the demands made by the opposition parties included, among others, allowing the country's citizens in the diaspora to participate in the vote.

They also wanted ZEC to allow the United Nation to run the elections.

The Daily News previously reported that at least 10 opposition parties were signatories to the electoral reforms in June last year.

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