Japan gives ZEC $I million for 2018 polls

THE Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) is committed to conducting free, fair and transparent elections said Commissioner Emmanuel Magade, the commission’s deputy chairperson.

Magade also said the commission’s ultimate desire is to ensure that the outcome of 2018 elections represented the will of the people of Zimbabwe.

He said this on Wednesday in Harare at the signing ceremony of a $1 million grant support to ZEC meant for voter education campaigns from the Japanese government’s Project for Supporting Fair and Transparent polls.

ZEC is in the process of preparing for a general election to be held next year.

The grant from the Japanese government comes days after the electoral body dismissed reports by Registrar General Tobaiwa Mudede that his office was also registering voters.

Japanese Ambassador to Zimbabwe Toshiyuki Iwado said the support should be channelled towards the voter education campaigns and the strengthening of information technology capacity of the Commission.

“It will also enhance the capacity of ZEC and the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission to mitigate electoral-related violence,” said Iwado.

“The grant should also support the voter registration process, both of which have the objective to promote citizen participation in the electoral process.”
He added, “The elections provide all Zimbabweans with the opportunity to exercise their sovereign right to choose their representatives for the years to come.

“As such the electoral process has to be free, fair, transparent, and inclusive.”

UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative Bishow Parajuli said the timely support will strengthen the democratic institutions in Zimbabwe in meeting their constitutional mandate.

“UNDP, in collaboration with other development partners, remains committed to provide technical and financial support to ZEC as may be required in preparation for the 2018 elections and beyond,” said Parajuli.

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