The Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) has appealed to Zambians not to get disenfranchised in the 2021 General Elections for failing to register as a voter.
ECZ Chairperson, Esau Chuulu said Zambians must seize the opportunity and register in order to vote in next year’s general elections.
Justice Chuulu said this when he launched the national voter registration exercise at the civic centre in Lusaka.
The ECZ Chairperson said the voter registration will run from November 9 to December 12, 2020 and will be conducted at civic centres in all the 116 districts in the country.
Justice Chuulu stated that all eligible voters are required to register to avoid being left out of the new voters register.
“If you want to participate in the elections next year, you better register now because indeed you have a duty as a citizen to register, and indeed to ensure that you’re not disenfranchised next year,” he added.
Justice Chuulu stated that the old voters card that people currently have will not be used in the 2021 general elections as the Electoral body is issuing new voters cards.
“The voter’s card which was used in 2016, will no longer be used in the 2021 general elections” said Justice Chuulu.
He advised that anyone can register anywhere in the country as long as they indicate the polling station where they want to vote from in the 2021 elections.
“This is a national commitment, if you’re a citizen of Zambia, and eligible, seize the opportunity,” advised Justice Chuulu.
Justice Chuulu called on the church, civil society and Members of Parliament to ensure that the general public is informed and sensitized to go and register.
He explained that the online pre-voter registration which started on September 21, is still running alongside the mobile voter registration.
“We have made it possible for citizens to go and register at any place of their convenience,” said Justice Chuulu.
And ECZ Chief Executive Officer, Patrick Nshindano urged voters to ensure that they verify their particulars before leaving the registration centre.
Mr Nshindano said failure to verify details can lead to a voter not being able to vote due to the details which may have been captured wrongly.
He assured that the Commission will ensure that it has adequate personnel and registration kits to speed up the exercise.
Mr Nshindano further expressed optimism that the Commission will capture the targeted number of voters.
He explained that the voter registration is not just for the new voters but also the old voters who have to be transitioned to the new voters register.
Mr Nshindano added that the new voter registration exercise will capture new details and a person’s biometrics that will upgrade a particular voter’s details.
He urged eligible voters to take advantage of the online voter pre – registration in order to spend less time at the registration centre.
The Electoral Commission is targeting to register about nine million voters under the new register.
Zambians that have attained the age of 18 or by 9 of May next year, are expected to register as voters for the 2021 general elections.