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ZEC unfazed by abuse

by Staff reporter
13 Apr 2019 at 13:08hrs | Views
The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) remains unfazed by incidents of abuse and insults directed at female commissioners, particularly its chairperson, Justice Priscilla Chigumba, by some elements and it will continue discharging its constitutional duty of running elections, an official has said.

ZEC deputy chairperson Mr Emmanuel Magade said there was need to develop a new culture of working together among stakeholders characterised by mutual respect as preparations for 2023 harmonised elections begin.

Mr Magade said this on Wednesday while addressing delegates attending a national multi-stakeholder post-election review conference for the July 30 2018 harmonised elections being organised by the election management body.

"It is my profound hope that going forward we can develop a new culture or modus operandi on how we can interact and relate with each other," he said.

"Here I have got in mind the sad incidents of abuse and insults directed at female commissioners, particularly the chairperson during the run up to the elections.

"Such treatment was totally unwarranted, uncalled for and in fact despicable and unAfrican.

"Some of us male members of the commission we really hung our heads in shame. Fortunately for all of us, our female commissioners remained unfazed. "They have continued to discharge their constitutional mandate with commitment, distinction and gusto."

Justice Chigumba assured stakeholders that they would take their contributions seriously.

"We are all accountable for the credibility of the electoral process," she said.

"So, the lessons that will emerge from this process will assist not only ZEC as the election administrators, but all election stakeholders in contributing towards the attainment of credible and acceptable electoral processes."

Officially opening the conference on Wednesday, Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ziyambi Ziyambi implored ZEC to expeditiously submit to Parliament recommendations that were of a legal nature.

"There is need to forward recommendations that are of a legal nature early to Parliament in order for the necessary amendments to be effected before 2023 general elections," he said.

"My ministry appeals to ZEC to bring forward issues arising from the conference that require amendments of the law early."

Minister Ziyambi's speech was read on his behalf by permanent secretary of the Ministry, Mrs Virginia Mabhiza. He said Government would implement recommendations by the Motlanthe Commission of Inquiry into the August 1, 2018 disturbances that rocked Harare before the 2023 general polls.

"As some of you are probably aware, the Government of Zimbabwe has set up a special inter-ministerial taskforce chaired by my Ministry to address issues arising from the findings of the Motlanthe Commission of Inquiry," he said.

"The taskforce is also expected to address issues arising from reports made by observer missions on last year's harmonised elections.

"It is my fervent hope that issues arising from this conference together with recommendations by the Motlanthe Commission should be addressed before the 2023 general elections."

Source - the herald