News and Publications

Report

Pre-Election Statement

The Election Resource Centre (ERC) is conducting a comprehensive election observation of the 26 March 2022 by-elections. The current phase includes long-term observers of the political and electoral environment ahead of the by-elections. The March 26 elections will be an important step for the country’s democracy, seeking to consolidate democratic gains achieved since the disputed 2018 Harmonised Elections. 

 

 

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The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) released its report on the 2018 harmonised elections in terms of Section 13 of the Electoral Act. The submission, long overdue, should have been within six months of the conduct of the election. ZEC indicated that, in accordance with Section
241 of the Constitution, the report was submitted to the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs in February 2019.

 

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The report describes the political, legislative and administrative narrative
associated with the impending election with a view to understanding any
fundamentality in the three different views and if an election can be
conducted to the satisfaction of Zimbabwean, regional and international
standards. 

 

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The Election Resource Centre (ERC), a think tank and advocacy organization
working on elections notes that the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) managed to conduct all by elections when they were due between August 2018 and October 2019. The ERC noted that the conduct of by-elections during the assessment periodwas not improved in any way by a legal framework that remained unchanged since the 2018 harmonised elections.

 

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The Election Resource Centre (ERC) as part of the efforts to observe both the 2022 voter
registration blitz and the 26 March 2022 by-elections sought to conduct an independent
analysis of the current voters roll as of the start of the voter registration blitz and for the
constituencies having by-elections on 26 March 2022.

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The Election Resource Centre (ERC) acknowledges the release of polling station results for the Zimbabwe 2018 presidential election. Such release of results is in partial fulfillment of verifiability of election results and the principle of transparency in election administration. However, the ERC notes that the release of the polling station results by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) was not accompanied by the availing of crucial information that would allow for an exhaustive audit of what the election management body announced.

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The 2018 Zimbabwe Harmonised Elections, conducted on the 30th of July were the second national elections to be held based on the new “people-driven” Constitution which was promulgated in 2013. The 2018 harmonised elections were also the first elections since independence in 1980, in which Robert Mugabe, the former President of Zimbabwe did not
feature as a candidate for the Zimbabwe African National Union Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF).

 

 

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The Constitution lays out the founding
values and principles of the country and is
the supreme law of Zimbabwe. Under the
Constitution are Acts of Parliament and court rulings which make up case law. Statutes give effect to Constitutional objectives, implemented mainly through the executive and constitutional commissions. The president appoints a cabinet and determines various ministries. Frequently, ministers and statutory bodies are given the power by statute to make regulations necessary to execute the objectives of the laws made by the legislature.

 

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Policy Briefs

Media and Elections Improving future elections

The media plays an important role in the holding of credible and democratic elections. A free and independent press underpins the ability of the media to play this role. Constitutional, legal and professional frameworks foreground freedom of the media, and the media’s professional standards of fairness and equality as important preconditions for democratic elections.

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Dealing with Political Culture as part of the Electoral Reform Agenda in Zimbabwe

The Election Resource Centre (ERC), having worked on issues of electoral reform dating back to 2010 is increasingly concerned at the manner in which the process of positively changing the electoral landscape has remained largely inaccessible to ordinary Zimbabwean citizens with limited support from the very institutions that should support democratic processes.

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