President Emmerson Mnangagwa has re-appointed Priscilla Makanyara Chigumba as the Chairperson of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) for another six-year term.
The reappointment, which was made in terms of Section 238 (5) of the Constitution, is with effect from 01 February 2023.
The Chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet Martin Rushwaya advised Chigumba about the reappointment in a letter on Thursday night. He wrote:
I am pleased to advise that His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe Cde. E.D. Mnangagwa has, in terms of Section 238(5) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe (No. 20) Act 2013 re-appointed you as the Chairperson of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission for a period of six years with effect from 1 February 2024.
The extension of Chigumba’s tenure as ZEC’s chairperson will be considered a huge blow by progressive opposition political parties and pro-democracy campaigners as she has presided over two disputed general elections.
Various international election observer missions, including the SADC Election Observer Mission (SEOM), pointed out several issues in ZEC’s conduct in the August 2023 general elections.
Among other things, ZEC was accused of gerrymandering and failing to deliver ballot papers on time, resulting in the disenfranchisement of thousands of people especially in Harare, an opposition stronghold.