The Zimbabwe Elections Support Network (ZESN) has called upon the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) to do more in terms of voter education to reduce the number of voters turned away at polling stations during voting days.
ZESN’s call comes after a significant number of voters was turned away in last weekend’s by-elections. In a statement released after the polls, ZESN said:
There is a need for continuous civic and voter education in between elections by Zec and civil society organisations in order to reduce numbers of turned away voters. Zec should devise mechanisms of clearly marking out polling stations to reduce the number of redirected voters.
ZESN, however, noted the peaceful environment experienced during the polls held in Chitungwiza, Matobo North and Beitbridge East. The report continued:
Zesn observed that the political environment on election day was largely calm. However, an incident was reported at Unit M Crèche in Chitungwiza where it was alleged that supporters of Zanu PF and MDC Alliance argued over suspicions of vote-buying close to the polling station. The situation was diffused by the riot police before any violent clashes transpired.