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ZEC says only 2 000 people registered to vote since January

THE Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) has revealed that it registered only 2 000 first-time voters throughout the year 2021.

The news will deal a hard blow to the main opposition MDC Alliance, which has been making spirited campaigns to encourage young people to register to vote and to ensure they participate in electoral processes.

The MDC Alliance is targeting 6 million votes in the upcoming 2023 elections, a notch higher than Zanu PF which aspires to accumulate 5 million votes tp secure a 65 percent win.

But both parties may want to revise the campaign strategies after ZEC Commissioner Jasper Mangwana yesterday dropped a bombshell during a virtual rally for the youth that the commission had so far only registered 2 000 first-time voters.

“We have activated our social media platforms to send out voter registration information and we are trying as a commission during these times of COVID-19,” he said.

“Imagine ZEC offices have been open even though we have been in COVID-19 and had scaled down our numbers, but we only registered 2 000 new voters this year out of our 63 district and 10 provincial offices in the country.”

ZEC had also announced plans to roll out a second voter registration blitz to run for 35 days, which started two days ago.

Voter registration is provided for in section 17A of the Electoral Act.

The revelations by Mangwana came at a time when the country is headed for by-elections to fill 133 parliamentary and local government seats, which fell vacant following the recall of MDC Alliance representatives by a rival faction led by Douglas Mwonzora.

President Emmerson Mnangagwa last week said he would announce the by-election dates early next month.

Virgin voters, who register after the dates have been proclaimed, will not cast their votes in the by-elections.

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