By Paul Nyathi|The Zimbabwe Electoral Commision has declared that no one, including the opposition MDC Alliance will be allowed to have access to the Biometric Voter Registration server.
In a statement responding to demands made by the opposition MDC Alliance through a petition last week, the ZEC chairperson Priscilla Chigumba said that the server which carries the voters roll is a state security item and will not be made accessible to anyone as is with all other national security items.
“The issue of access to the server is controlled in the same way as is the case with all institutions that keep custody of information of a security or confidential nature,” said Chigumba.
The opposition Alliance in its demands last week requested that ZEC allows a panel of experts from the party to inspect the server for any possible irregularities.
Justice Chigumba also dismissed demands by the MDC Alliance for it to be involved in the procurement and movement of the ballot paper.
“One of the issues raised in the petition had to do with the procurement and movement of the ballot paper and I would like to reinforce that such is the exclusive right of the commission in terms of Section 239 of the Constitution,” said Chigumba.
She added: “This is an administrative matter for which the commission is not subject to the direction or control of any person. However, as a consensus-building gesture in order to foster transparency, the commission has resolved to allow political parties and other stakeholders to observe the printing of the ballots when the time comes.”
Chigumba also said that her Commission does not have the mandate to call off an election once it has been proclaimed as was demanded by the opposition party.
“Our response to the conditions precedent for holding elections, our response would be the commission is bound by the Constitution to carry out its mandate. Once a proclamation has been issued it is required by law to proceed with preparations for elections and it can only be stopped by a court of law”.