Audit Chaotic Voters roll — MP

MASVINGO urban MDC-T MP Tongai Matutu on Tuesday moved a motion in parliament calling for an immediate audit of the voters’ roll after citing gross inaccuracies and irregularities.

The motion was seconded by Makoni South MP, Pishai Muchauraya (MDC-T).
This comes a month after the research and advocacy unit of pressure group Sokwanele carried an audit unravelling several anomalies in the current voters’ roll administered by the Registrar-General’s office. The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission runs the election.
“Alarmed by the chaotic state of the voters’ roll in Zimbabwe as evidence by the presence of names of deceased persons, geriatrics over 100 years old, multiple entries and a multitude of general inaccuracies … now this House calls upon the inclusive government to immediately carry out a comprehensive audit of the voters’ roll to rid it of all inaccuracies and irregularities,” reads the motion. 
Matutu said government had over the years taken “little action” to update the voters’ roll arguing that any poll carried out using the current voters’ register would lack credibility.
The Morgan Tsvangirai-led MDC criticises the allegedly flawed roll for being part of Zanu PF’s strategy to rig elections.
Zimbabwe is expected to hold fresh elections after the current lethargic constitution-making process.
The Sokwanele audit identified names of 74 021 voters aged above 100 on the roll used in last year’s harmonised parliamentary and presidential elections. This figure raised eyebrows given the country’s life expectancy of below 40 There were also 82 456 people registered who are aged between 90 and 100, according to the audit.
“These figures are quite amazing when you consider that average life expectancy in Zimbabwe is 34 for women and 37 for men, and in light of the fact that the World Health Organisation predicts that only 14,7% of people live beyond 60 in Zimbabwe,” the pressure group observed in a report titled “2013 Vision — Seeing Double and the Dead”.
The Sokwanele researchers said they were not able to determine whether the very large number of elderly people on the voters roll (over 17% of the roll comprises people aged 60 and over) are living or deceased.
The audit also discovered a “large number of duplicate entries” on the roll.
The report noted that despite denials by RG Tobaiwa Mudede that there was no way identity numbers could appear twice in the same roll, the audit proved that several ID numbers, names, addresses, birth dates and other details were duplicated.
“Specifically 182 564 instances of duplicate entries were identified where people were registered in two or more constituencies simultaneously,” the report said.

 

Bernard Mpofu

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