THE Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) on Tuesday re-assured political parties that there would not be rigging through the controversial special voting system, amidst widespread belief that the ballots would be tampered with.
Hazel Ndebele/ Carlos Vieira
At a meeting with political parties in Harare, Zec chairperson Justice Rita Makarau said the electoral body had put in place mechanisms that would ensure that the ballots after special voting would not be tampered with.
Special voting taking place this weekend on July 14 and July 15 is a system under which persons, who would be unable to vote on polling day on July 31 because they will be performing other duties, vote in advance.
Political parties raised concerns of vote rigging through that system, but Makarau assured them they had put in place a system that safeguarded against ballot tampering.
To safeguard against abuse of the special voting facility, Zec said each individual wanting to be regarded as a special voter had to produce a certificate from the chief elections officer or commanding officer of a disciplined force stating that the applicant will be deployed to carry out duties on the election day away from the ward in which they are registered as a voter.
She said the names of those people who vote this weekend would be crossed out of the ward-based voters roll.
“The ballots are transported from polling stations to the chief elections officer and thereafter to the ward in tamper-proof envelops that will be sealed in the presence of election agents who are entitled to sign on the seal,” she said.
Makarau also said political party agents are entitled to be present when the tamper-proof envelopes are opened.