The Technical Committee to look at modalities of holding the 2021 General Election amidst the COVID-19 pandemic has been constituted and held its inaugural meeting yesterday.
This follows the 22nd February 2021 consultative meeting between the Ministry of Health and Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) whose resolution was to form a technical committee to work on mainstreaming COVID-19 prevention mechanisms into the 2021 General Election Calendar.
ECZ Corporate Affairs Manager Patricia Luhanga indicates in a statement released to ZANIS in Lusaka today that membership has been drawn from the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Local Government, Zambia National Public Health Institute (ZNPHI) 5 and the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (OVP-DMMU).
She said other include Zambia Centre for Inter Party Dialogue (ZCID), Civil Society Organisation, Zambia Police Service, Media Institute for Southern Africa (MISA) – Zambia as well as the Electoral Commission of Zambia which is leading the process.
Ms. Luhanga stated that in today’s meeting, the Electoral Commission of Zambia presented the Election Calendar with associated activities while the Ministry of Health and the Zambia National Public Health Institute presented the current 2 country scenario of the COVID-19 pandemic which form a basis for what the Committee will be focusing on.
“As a way forward, the meeting agreed to among other things formulate the terms of reference for the Technical Committee to which the Ministry of Health is to provide disaggregated demographic data on how COVID-19 has affected each population segment,” she noted.
She said the meeting further agreed to review the adequacy of the legal framework to ascertain levels of adherence and to identify structures that will support the cascading of information to the rest of the stakeholders.
“The Technical Committee will be meeting on a regular basis to speed up the formulation of guidelines and allow for timely engagement of political parties and other stakeholders,” Ms. Luhanga indicated.