Nomination deadline: Parties race against the clock to register candidates

Political parties are rushing to beat the clock to register their candidates ahead of today’s 4PM deadline.

At the High Court, six candidates had been confirmed by 2PM, including President Emmerson Mnangagwa and his main opponent, Nelson Chamisa of the CCC.

“So far, I’m told, the process is going on very well. I’m happy that Zimbabwe is now a mature democracy,” Mnangagwa told reporters after Justice Minister filed papers for him.

Chamisa was expected at the court later this afternoon. Saviour Kasukuwere, the former ZANU PF commissar, filed his papers through his lawyers.

It has not been smooth sailing for ZANU PF and CCC in some areas. In Zvimba, two ZANU PF candidates filed papers for Ward 4, according to a post by Information Secretary, Nick Mangwana. In Harare CCC candidates faced delays after some signatures on their papers did not match the designated signatures submitted to ZEC. Before nomination, each party is asked to submit names of officials authorised to sign for candidates. These must be the same signatories that sigh for candidates when they go for nomination.

CCC spokesperson, Fadzayi Mahare, filed her papers to stand for her party in Mt Pleasant.

In Bulawayo, nomination forms for CCC candidates arrived shortly before 3PM, in time to allow candidates to start registering.

The nomination court closes at 4PM, but candidates who will be in court at that time will be allowed to complete their registration. The nomination court is sitting in 103 locations across the country.

On Tuesday, ZEC chief elections officer Utoile Silaigwana said 6.5 million people have been registered for this election.

What of the voters’ roll?

Once nominated and registered by the court, according to Section 20 of the Electoral Act, a candidate can get an electronic copy of the voters’ roll for free. They can also pay for a print copy of the register.

What happens if someone is unhappy about nomination?

Any person that raises a dispute with the nomination court must appeal to the Electoral Court within four days. The law also allows a candidate to withdraw before polling day. If a candidate withdraws or dies seven days after nomination, their party is allowed to register a replacement. But they must do this within two days of that candidate withdrawing or dying.