Commercial Farmers' Union of Zimbabwe

Commercial Farmers' Union of Zimbabwe

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Youths turned away for bringing Affidavits to register as voters

Youths turned away for bringing Affidavits to register as voters

Youths from Bulawayo are deeply frustrated over the change in positions by 
the Registrar General when it comes to initial voter registration. This came 
to light after groups of Young people from Magwegwe and Nkulumane 
respectively went to the registrar’s office to register for the first time 
to become voters but were turned away for bringing affidavits.

“We went to the registrar’s office on Friday to register to become voters, 
we had everything that was required to get ourselves into the voters’ roll 
however things did not go as planned as we were told that affidavits were 
not required for the process but written letters. We were turned away for 
bringing affidavits which legally speaking are much better than a written 
letter,” said a concerned youth who chose to remain anonymous.

In a statement which appeared in The Zimbabwean in 2011, Tobaiwa Mudede, the 
Registraar General said,”one of the requirements needed for one to register 
as a voter are: A Sworn statement by employer of applicant confirming 
applicant’s address and any other information or document sufficient to 
ascertain the applicant’s residence. While rural dwellers would need a 
confirmation letter from the chief, headman or village head, farm owner or 
mine owner”.

The youths and residents at large have questioned the decision to send away 
the youths who had brought affidavits, with some alleging that it is a way 
of frustrating young people from actively participating in the forthcoming 
General elections. Young people in Zimbabwe constitute over 60% of the 
population and their participation in electoral processes can be the game 
changer in Zimbabwean Politics.

“The decision to send the youths away is questionable. It feels like the 
registrar’s office is now being used to sabotage potential voters instead of 
facilitating their registration,” said Bridget Ncube, one of the Youths who 
were turned away.

She further said, “I am afraid that young people will be frustrated by the 
process of going back and forth trying to get their documents in order, 
giving up on their chance to contribute to changing the country’s status 

NYDT, an organisation that is working on assisting young people to register, 
also voiced its concern and promised to engage the registrar general’s 
office on behalf of these young people. “Every Zimbabwean, as long as they 
are above 18 years should be allowed to register to vote. The tendency by 
officials from the Registrar General’s office to frustrate potential voters 
can not be tolerated. As an organisation we will be engaging the registrar 
general’s office to find out if there have been adjustments to voter 
registration requirements.” Njabulo Moyo of NYDT said.

The registrar general is responsible for the voters’ roll hence the need to 
go to the registrar’s office to register as a voter. The voters’ roll’s 
accuracy has in the past been questioned as it is one of the tools used for 
rigging during elections. Registering as voter is a continuous process, 
youths and the public at large who are at the eligible age of voting have 
been advised to go to the local registry and register to vote.


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