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Zimbabwe elections a farce

by Staff reporter
06 Feb 2024 at 07:47hrs | Views
The Zimbabwe Council of Churches (ZCC) has voiced concerns over the detrimental effects of the illegal recalls of elected members of parliament and council, which have led to widespread voter apathy witnessed in the recent by-elections.

During the weekend, Zimbabwe held by-elections to fill six parliamentary seats and 17 council positions left vacant due to recalls initiated by Sengezo Tshabangu, the self-proclaimed secretary-general of the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC). However, the voter turnout was dismally low, standing at only 23.2%.

In a statement, ZCC highlighted that the low voter turnout reflects the electorate's frustration with the electoral process. The church emphasized that Zimbabweans appear to view elections as mere ceremonial events rather than democratic mechanisms for expressing their preferences in leadership.

ZCC condemned the practice of recalling elected officials, stating that it undermines the will of the electorate and disrupts the democratic process. Such actions, driven by narrow political interests, disregard the wishes of Zimbabwean voters and impose significant costs on the nation.

The ongoing recalls of elected officials have been criticized for keeping the country in a perpetual state of electioneering, even months after the general election. Opposition leader Nelson Chamisa denounced the recalls as a project orchestrated by Zanu-PF, further exacerbating the erosion of constitutional democracy.

ZCC emphasized that the recalls contribute to voter apathy by disenfranchising a significant portion of the electorate, resulting in elected representatives who lack broad-based legitimacy. This, in turn, undermines the integrity of electoral processes and diminishes their capacity to reflect the collective will of the people.

The church called on political actors to consider the repercussions of their actions on the electorate and urged a reconsideration of electoral practices. Restoring the integrity of elections is vital for nurturing a democratic society where the voice of the people remains central to good governance and national transformation.

Source - newzimbabwe