The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) says it expects to conclude the delimitation exercise by end of year in preparation for next year’s harmonized elections.
Delimitation is the process of dividing the country into constituencies and wards for the purposes of elections of persons to constituency seats in the National Assembly and of councilors to local authorities. The process is carried out in terms of sections 160 and 161 of the new Constitution.
In a statement, ZEC chief elections officer Utoile Silaigwana said mechanisms had been put in place to carry out the process.
“The Commission expects to conclude the exercise by December this year. In terms of Section 161(2) delimitation must be completed six (6) months before the conduct of any general election for it to be applicable to that election.
“Failure to adhere to this provision means the results of the delimitation exercise will not apply for the next general election, as the Commission will be compelled by the law to revert to boundaries of the 2007/2008 delimitation exercise,” said Silaigwana.
He assured stakeholders that no one will be disadvantaged and all parties will be engaged at all stages of the process.
“The Commission would like to assure the electorate that no one will be prejudiced by the delimitation outcome. The delimitation results will be an outcome based on the Commission’s adherence to the country’s legal provisions and fair practice.
“At all stages of the process, voter education and stakeholder engagements will be conducted to bring all interested parties on board. The Commission is appealing to all stakeholders to cooperate with its officers during this process,” he said.
There are fears that the delimitation exercise might not be conducted in a transparent manner with stakeholders calling for impartiality.