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The Southern African Electoral Institute (EISA), a civil society organisation, today accused the Technical Secretariat for Electoral Administration (STAE) of of cutting the number of voters in areas dominated by the opposition, in the run-up to the October general elections.
The accusation was published in a study on the distribution of election census brigades for the 2019 elections in Mozambique, drawn up by the Mozambican delegation NGO and titled ‘An analysis of the distribution of electoral registration brigades for the 2019 elections in Mozambique’.
“The distribution of voter registration brigades was to ease the registration of voters in areas under the strong influence of Frelimo [the ruling party] and to reduce the number of voters in the regions under opposition rule,” the survey says.
According to the study, conducted by researcher Domingos do Rosário, STAE created an unfavourable logistics for voter registration in the areas that voted for the opposition, and eased registration in those areas which favour the Frelimo Liberation Front, the party in power.
“The [Frelimo-dominated] Gaza constituency benefited from a 34.2% increase in voter registration brigades, but Zambezia [voting for the opposition] increased by only 8.1%,” the text reads.
The percentage increase of voters in Gaza was half the total number of voters in the province of Zambézia, EISA explains.
Reducing the number of voters in opposition-controlled constituencies will result in a reduction in the number of seats for the Assembly of the Republic and provincial assemblies.
“For territories with a tendency to vote for the opposition, the allocation of fewer brigades will also have a perverse effect during the voting phase,” the analysis says.
The disposal of polling stations could also reduce the capacity of political parties and civil society organisations to monitor the vote, EISA claims.
Lusa has not yet been able to secure a comment on EISA’s allegations from STAE.
Mozambique will hold its sixth general elections on October 15 of this year, with voting for presidential, legislative and provincial candidates, the latter having elected governors for the first time.Source: Lusa
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