The Zimbabwe Council of Churches (ZCC) has voiced its deep concern over the recent by-elections, citing widespread voter apathy and the erosion of trust in electoral processes. According to ZCC, the illegal recalls of elected officials, orchestrated by certain political factions, have contributed significantly to the disillusionment among voters.
In a statement, ZCC highlighted the shockingly low voter turnout, averaging at 23.2%, compared to previous elections. This decline, they argue, reflects a growing sentiment of disenchantment and frustration with the political system. The recurrent recalls of elected officials have further exacerbated this disillusionment, as voters perceive these actions as undermining the democratic will of the people.
The Church strongly criticized the practice of recalling elected officials, asserting that it disregards the electorate’s will and undermines the integrity of the electoral process. Such actions, driven by partisan interests, not only weaken democracy but also impose significant costs on the nation as a whole.
Opposition leader Nelson Chamisa echoed these sentiments, attributing the low turnout to the erosion of trust in the electoral system. He emphasized the need for electoral processes to accurately reflect the collective will of the people, lamenting that many elected officials now represent only a fraction of their constituents.
ZCC called upon political actors to reflect on the impact of their actions and urged a reconsideration of electoral practices to restore public confidence. They emphasized the importance of upholding the integrity of elections as a cornerstone of democracy and good governance, essential for the country’s transformation and progress.