Zimbabwe's Registrar General Tobaiwa Mudede warned the public Monday not to rely on a voters’ roll posted online, describing it as “incorrect, defiled and distorted.”
The said voters’ roll is provided by a website called myzimvote.com, which has been urging Zimbabweans to check their voter registration status by submitting identity registration numbers.
But Mudede took out ads in state-run newspapers saying the register is illegal and inaccurate.
“The website does not originate from the department of the Registrar General of Voters in Zimbabwe,” the statement said.
“We are warning and advising citizens of Zimbabwe wherever they are, not to accept and access this website. The information contained in this website about voters is incorrect, defiled and distorted. Investigations are underway.”
A statement on the myzimvote.com website says it obtained the voters’ roll legally from the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC).
But ZEC chairperson Justice Rita Makarau said recently that her commission was carrying out investigations to ascertain who was behind the seemingly faceless portal.
An email request to the portal for an interview was not returned.
Political commentator and NANGO chairman Effie Dlela Ncube says voters should use the official register provided by the government to be on the safe side.
A report issued by the Research and Advocacy Unit, meanwhile, has revealed discrepancies between the number of potential voters on the latest voters’ roll and the population census conducted in 2012.
In its analysis entitled "Key Statistics from the June 2013 Voters' Roll," the version of the register examined by RAU found the 18-19 age group registering at only 8% of the total 2012 population.
Around 45,000 youth were found in the roll versus the over 500,000 found the in census.
In groups from the ages of 20-29 the unit also reported a difference of nearly 630,000 between potential voters and the census population.
Ages 25-29 had a population census total of 1,063, 852 with the voters roll recording 549,946 people.
In other cases, RAU found over registration in the age groups of 30 to 34, showing nearly 51,000 more registered voters than the census population of 830,000.
It found more than 200,000 voters than the census in the between the ages of 35-39, which recorded 674,638 people in the census.
VOA spoke to Research and Advocacy Unit senior researcher Tony Reeler who said at face value, the discrepancies pose serious issues to a credible election, which is due July 31.
He said the number of unregistered voters in the younger ages could indicate a systematic move to disenfranchise youths from voting, the largest margin of population in Zimbabwe.
Reeler said his organizing is expecting to see the voters' roll after the current voter registration drive ends to see all discrepancies within the roll remain.