Zimbabwe’s electoral body said on Tuesday it was failing to register voters at any given time in lockstep with the country’s laws due to crippling financial constraints. And given its dire straits, the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) said it was only registering new voters in areas with by-elections. Critics say the failure to keep the process open is jeopardizing thousands of prospective voters and undermining the country’s electoral system.
“Voter registration should be continuous in terms of our laws but it is not,” said ZEC chairperson, Rita Makarau. “The problem mainly is resources, we would want to go biometric, but we don’t have the funds at the moment.”
One activist pushing for a fair and transparent electoral process lashed out, speculating that the Zanu PF government was deliberately depriving ZEC of resources so it can cling onto power.