Inquiry Demanded Over Zimbabwe’s 2023 Controversial Elections

February 23, 2024
ZEC | Report Focus News

Harare, Zimbabwe – In a significant move highlighting the contentious nature of Zimbabwe’s August 2023 elections, the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) has called for the establishment of a Commission of Inquiry to investigate the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission’s (ZEC) management of the electoral process. The request was made during a session in the National Assembly where ZEC’s report on the elections was being scrutinized.

CCC legislator Darlington Chigumbu has been at the forefront of the critique, pointing out the operational failures and discrepancies noted in the ZEC’s handling of the elections. A key issue raised was the significant delay in the distribution of ballot papers, which affected the smooth conduct of the elections in various constituencies.

Chigumbu argued, “The establishment of a Commission of Inquiry is imperative to delve into the reasons behind ZEC’s logistical failures, particularly the inefficiencies observed in the printing and distribution of ballot papers.” He further emphasized the need to investigate the capacity of the machines used for printing and the decision-making processes that led to these delays.

The call for an inquiry is not just about addressing the logistical mishaps but also about ensuring accountability for the additional financial burden placed on candidates due to the extended election period. Chigumbu suggests that those affected should receive compensation from ZEC, highlighting the unfair challenges they faced.

The 2023 elections have become a focal point of contention within Zimbabwe’s political landscape. Criticism from opposition members and international observers has raised serious questions about the integrity of the electoral process and, by extension, the future of democracy in the Southern African nation.

Despite ZEC’s attempt to address some of the concerns through its report, accusations of a lack of transparency and discrepancies in the commission’s account of events persist. “ZEC’s explanations fall short of addressing the real issues at hand,” Chigumbu stated, underscoring the need for a more transparent and accountable electoral process.

This demand for a comprehensive inquiry into the 2023 elections underscores the ongoing disputes and dissatisfaction with the electoral process in Zimbabwe, signaling a critical moment for the country’s democratic practices and governance.