Expedite appointment of new chair: ZESN

By Collins Chirinda

Harare, 12 December 2017

Zimbabwe Electoral Support Network (ZESN), has called on government to hasten the appointment of a new chairperson after Justice Rita Makarau tendered in her resignation ahead of the 2018 watershed polls during the weekend.

The Zimbabwe Electoral Support Network (ZESN) issued a press statement on the appointment of a new ZEC chair this afternoon.

Published on its website, the press release stated that a replacement for Makarau would be done promptly since ZEC had been duly notified of her resignation.

“The Zimbabwe Election Support Network (ZESN) notes the resignation of Justice Rita Makarau as Chairperson of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC).

“ZESN calls upon the government to expedite the appointment of the new ZEC chairperson in line with Section 238 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, to ensure that there is ample time to acclimatize to the new position and oversee key electoral processes before the next elections.” read the statement.

Makarau resigned under unclear circumstances during a time when allegations of vote rigging and constitutional infringement have been the dominant public sentiment after the ouster of former President Robert Mugabe.

The statement also highlighted that ZEC should have its own separate budget which would establish the independence of government control on the electoral body.

“ZESN calls for the revitalization of electoral governance to strengthen the independence of ZEC and avail adequate resources to ensure that the Commission manages its own budget independent of government control.

“It is imperative that ZEC be institutionally independent from the executive and exercise full responsibility for implementation. ZESN reiterates its position that the Parliament of Zimbabwe be accorded the oversight role over the Electoral Commission in order to ensure that its independence is not undermined through executive interference.” Continues the statement.

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