News / Africa

    Audit: More Than a Million Extra Names on Zimbabwe Voter Rolls

    Supporters of Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe's ZANU-PF party cheer during an election rally in Chitungwiza, about 35 kilometers south of the capital Harare, July 16, 2013.
    Supporters of Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe's ZANU-PF party cheer during an election rally in Chitungwiza, about 35 kilometers south of the capital Harare, July 16, 2013.
    An independent audit of Zimbabwe's voters roll has found it contains the names of more than a million people who either are deceased or have left the African country. The research group that conducted the audit spoke to reporters Wednesday after the government blocked it from making a presentation to civil society groups. The findings come less than two weeks before Zimbabwe is due to hold national elections.

    The Research and Advocacy Unit [RAU] was supposed to present the findings of its audit of the voters roll on Wednesday to pro-democracy civic organizations in Harare. But the event was canceled on government orders, said Kuda Chitsike, who heads the RAU.

    “The Registrar General left an interdict at our offices from the High Court to stop the event from going ahead," said Chitsike. "The Registrar General’s interdict is based on a misconception that we wanted to launch the voters’ roll. RAU was going to launch an analysis done on the voters’ roll. The chairperson of ZEC and the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission are aware that RAU has been working on such an audit.”

    Analysis of voters roll

    The electoral commission had asked the Registrar General’s office - a government department - to compile a voters’ roll for the July 31 elections, which RAU then analyzed.

    Besides revealing that the voter roll has more than a million people who are either deceased or have left Zimbabwe, RAU said there is a marked registration bias in favor of rural constituencies, which are mainly strongholds of President Robert Mugabe's ZANU-PF party.

    Jeremiah Bamu of the advocacy group Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights is hopeful RAU will be allowed to present the audit, which also found that 63 constituencies have more registered voters than inhabitants based on the 2012 census.

    “We have communicated with lawyers representing the Registrar General’s office and alerted them that their application is based on something that is not correct. We supplied them with correct information," said Bamu. "What might have influenced the Registrar General to block this presentation."

    "The usual fears that they have that people have access to the voters roll and can identify some inconsistencies,” he said.

    The lawyer added that the case would spill into court if the government does not allow RAU to make public its audit of Zimbabwe voters’ roll.

    MDC makes court challenge

    Already, the Movement for Democratic Change [MDC] party of Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai is in court challenging special early voting of Zimbabwe’s police and security forces.   

    The voting this week went on three days, one more than the constitutionally-mandated limit of two.

    The MDC also is arguing that the electoral commission inflated the number of security agents in order to rig the elections for Mugabe and his party. The case will continue Thursday at Zimbabwe’s high court where the MDC is seeking to have these early votes nullified.   

    Even before this controversy, the elections appeared beset by trouble. Last week, Finance Minister Tendai Biti warned that Zimbabwe was about $90 million short in election funding.

    The elections, if they go through, are expected to end the power-sharing government formed by Mugabe and Tsvangirai after the violent and disputed 2008 elections.

    You May Like

    Taj Mahal Battles New Threat from Insects

    Swarms of insects are proliferating in the heavily contaminated waters of the Yamuna River, which flows behind the 17th century monument

    Self-doubt, Cultural Barriers Hinder Cambodian Women in Tech

    Longtime Cambodian tech observer Sok Sikieng says that although more women have joined profession in recent years, there remain significant factors hindering women from reaching tech potential

    Trans-Adriatic Pipeline to Boost European Energy Security

    $4.5 billion-pipeline will become operational in 2020 and will deliver gas from Azerbaijan’s Shah Deniz II field to southern Italy

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnami
    X
    Elizabeth Lee
    May 22, 2016 6:04 AM
    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnam

    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video First-generation, Afghan-American Student Sets Sights on Basketball Glory

    Their parents are immigrants to the United States. They are kids who live between two worlds -- their parents' homeland and the U.S. For many of them, they feel most "American" at school. It can be tricky balancing both worlds. In this report, produced by Beth Mendelson, Arash Arabasadi tells us about one Afghan-American student who seems to be coping -- one shot at a time.
    Video

    Video Newest US Citizens, Writing the Next Great Chapter

    While universities across the United States honor their newest graduates this Friday, many immigrants in downtown Manhattan are celebrating, too. One hundred of them, representing 31 countries across four continents, graduated as U.S. citizens, joining the ranks of 680,000 others every year in New York and cities around the country.
    Video

    Video Vietnam Sees Strong Economic Growth Despite Incomplete Reforms

    Vietnam has transformed its communist economy to become one of the world's fastest-growing nations. While the reforms are incomplete, multinational corporations see a profitable future in Vietnam and have made major investments -- as VOA's Jim Randle reports.
    Video

    Video Qatar Denies World Cup Corruption

    The head of Qatar’s organizing committee for the 2022 World Cup insists his country's bid to host the soccer tournament was completely clean, despite the corruption scandals that have rocked the sport’s governing body, FIFA. Hassan Al-Thawadi also said new laws would offer protection to migrants working on World Cup construction projects. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Infrastructure Funding Puts Cambodia on Front Line of International Politics

    When leaders of the world’s seven most developed economies meet in Japan next week, demands for infrastructure investment world wide will be high on the agenda. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push for “quality infrastructure investment” throughout Asia has been widely viewed as a counter to the rise of Chinese investment flooding into region.
    Video

    Video Democrats Fear Party Unity a Casualty in Clinton-Sanders Battle

    Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton claimed a narrow victory in Tuesday's Kentucky primary even as rival Bernie Sanders won in Oregon. Tensions between the two campaigns are rising, prompting fears that the party will have a difficult time unifying to face the presumptive Republican nominee, Donald Trump. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video Portrait of a Transgender Marriage: Husband and Wife Navigate New Roles

    As controversy continues in North Carolina over the use of public bathrooms by transgender individuals, personal struggles with gender identity that were once secret are now coming to light. VOA’s Tina Trinh explored the ramifications for one couple as part of trans.formation, a series of stories on transgender issues.
    Video

    Video Amerikan Hero Flips Stereotype of Middle Eastern Character

    An Iranian American comedian is hoping to connect with American audiences through a film that inverts some of Hollywood's stereotypes about Middle Eastern characters. Sama Dizayee reports.
    Video

    Video Budding Young Inventors Tackle City's Problems with 3-D Printing

    Every city has problems, and local officials and politicians are often frustrated by their inability to solve them. But surprising solutions can come from unexpected places. Students in Baltimore. Maryland, took up the challenge to solve problems they identified in their city, and came up with projects and products to make a difference. VOA's June Soh has more on a digital fabrication competition primarily focused on 3-D design and printing. Carol Pearson narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora