Prioritize Electoral Reforms, Bonyongwe Told

Leading poll watchdog, Election Resource Centre (ERC) has called upon the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, Happyton Bonyongwe to consider comprehensive alignment of the Electoral Act to guarantee a credible 2018 electoral process.

In a letter submitted to Bonyongwe’s office, ERC called on the newly installed Justice Minister to consider a comprehensive alignment and amendment of the Electoral Act before the watershed polls set for August next year.

“ERC therefore implores upon your honorable office to consider comprehensive alignment and amendment of the Electoral Act before the 2018 elections,” reads part of the letter.

ERC brought to Bonyongwe’s attention that the recently tabled electoral amendment bill HB 06, 2017 falls far short of requirements as far as the holding of free, fair and credible elections in Zimbabwe is concerned.

“The bill currently under consideration falls far short of requirements towards alignment and guarantees towards free, fair and credible electoral processes,” the ERC said in a letter.

They said the embattled Vice President and former Minister of Justice, Justice Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Emmerson Mnangagwa had promised to have comprehensive reforms before the next plebiscite.

“Sir, the ERC would like to bring to your attention the recently tabled electoral amendment bill HB 06, 2017. Prior, in 2013, then Minister and Vice President, Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa promised the Parliament of Zimbabwe delivery of a comprehensive electoral amendment bill,” reads part of the letter.

The ERC partnered with other civil society organisations has since submitted a petition to Parliament of Zimbabwe insisting on the alignment of electoral laws to the Constitution.

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