Zimbabwe Electoral Commission scraps by-elections

HARARE –  The Zimbabwe electoral Commission (ZEC) has announced the scrapping of all national assembly and council by-elections that fall due starting this November citing provisions of the country’s laws which forbid any polling inside nine months prior to a general election.

This was announced by ZEC chairperson Priscilla Chigumba.

“Section 158(3) of the Constitution provides that polling in by-elections shall take place within ninety days of the vacancies occurring unless the vacancies occur within nine months before a general election is due to be held,” Chigumba said.

“The last general election held in 2018 was held on the 31st July 2018.

“It is therefore anticipated from a reading of section 158(3) of the Constitution that general elections will be held on a date to be set during the month of either July or August 2023.

“Members of the public are thus notified that the filling of vacancies that occur on or after the 1st of November 2022 will be suspended pending the conduct of the 2023 general elections.”

Meanwhile, police say they have deployed enough officers to cover six by- elections which are all being held this Saturday.

“The Zimbabwe Republic Police assures the public that it has adequately deployed police officers to ensure that the Local Authority By-Elections scheduled for the 22nd of October 2022 in Matobo, Insiza, Guruve, Mutare Central, Buhera and Chirumhanzu are held peacefully,” said police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi.

“The police urges political parties and their supporters to conduct their campaigns and activities peacefully to ensure that the voting process will be conducted in a peaceful manner as outlined by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission.”

Police urged the public to “report anyone who engages in violence or disregards the electoral rules at any station nearest to them.

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