Zimbabwean lawyer, Advocate Thabani Mpofu who is popularly known for representing Nelson Chamisa and the MDC Alliance in a 2018 presidential election dispute says relevant stakeholders must assist civil servants with the postal voting process.
He said many of them will be manning polls and might fail to “choose their government” hence the need to assist them. He said:
Postal voting s71-80 Electoral Act
In 2018, more than 40 000 teachers were disenfranchised because they were engaged by ZEC as electoral officers outside their constituencies. s72 provides that electoral officers can vote beforehand by postal vote.
An application for a postal vote must be made to the Chief Elections Officer and must be made no later than noon on the 14th day after nomination day.
Postal voting is relatively safe and must be encouraged. In addition, the integrity of the vote is protected. Critically, it is the only way by which the bulk of civil servants can participate in the electoral process as players and not as mere umpires.
My plea is for the relevant NGOs to specifically target civil servants and help them with this process. Those that will participate in the elections as electoral officers must be allowed to vote beforehand. Civil servants must also choose their government.
Section 75 of the Electoral Act stipulates that postal voting is done secretly not in the presence of any person.
Section 72 of the Electoral Act notes that security officers who will be performing security duties in other provinces which are not their normal workstations can exercise their right to vote through the postal ballot system.