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Zimbabwe Electoral Commission Says It Only Registered 2,000 First Time Voters in 2021

Zimbabweans vote at the Sherwood Primary School in Kwekwe, Zimbabwe, Monday July 30, 2018. The vote will be a first for the southern African nation following a military takeover and the ousting of former longterm leader Robert Mugabe. (AP Photo/Jerome)

The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) says it only registered 2,000 new voters this year amid concerns that some constituencies may be merged in several provinces.

According to the privately-owned NewsDay newspaper, a ZEC official told a virtual youth meeting on Wednesday, organized by the state-controlled electoral body, that first-time voters are not registering to vote in national polls.

The newspaper quoted commissioner Jasper Mangwana as saying, “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.”

He said they have launched a campaign on social media platforms in an attempt to get first time voters and others. ZEC has already rolled out a voter registration blitz which is expected to run for 35 days.

The commission shelved plans to conduct a voter registration campaign a month ago claiming that the Registrar General’s office was failing to produce identify documents for people intending to register as voters.

The ruling party and opposition MDC Alliance are targeting to register at least 11 million voters ahead of the 2023 harmonized elections.