By Alois Vinga
ZIMBABWE Elections Commission (ZEC) says while all poll related activities remain suspended in line with Covid-19 lockdown regulations, the filling in of Proportional Representation vacant seats will proceed.
A number of seats have fallen vacant following recalls made by the Douglas Mwonzora led MDC-T faction last year after the court ruled that MDC Alliance leader usurped power outside the main opposition’s constitution.
The holding of elections in the country is under a blanket ban as part of the country’s Covid-19 prevention strategies.
This week, ZEC chief elections officer, Utloile Silaigwana said the filling of PR vacant posts will proceed because they are less risky in spreading the virus.
“The filling of Proportional Representation seats will continue as this exercise does not put the health of those involved at risk.
“In response to the announcement by the Minister of Health and Child Care for the nation to adopt stringent national Covid-19 lockdown measures and subsequent promulgation of Statutory Instrument 10 of 2021, ZEC announces that it is suspending with immediate effect, all electoral activities which bring groups of people together until further notice,” he said.
Last year, then interim MDC-T President Thokozani Khupe resumed her role as leader of the opposition in Parliament after she and 14 others from her party were sworn-in as members of the National Assembly and Senate.
They were nominated by the party to replace those in proportional representation seats who were recalled.
Senators and the block of special proportional representation seats in the National Assembly reserved for women are filled from party lists based on the proportion of votes party candidates for constituencies won in the last general election.