Delimitation to conclude by year-end – Wina

By Staff Reporter
VICE-President Inonge Wina told Parliament yesterday that the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) intended to conclude the delimitation exercise by December this year.
Presenting a statement on the 2019 delimitation exercise in the House, the Vice-President highlighted that the ECZ, in accordance with Article 58 (5) of the Constitution of Zambia, amendment Act No. 2 of 2016, was mandated to conduct the delimitation of constituencies and wards.
She noted that Section 21 of the electoral process Act No. 35 of 2016 further mandated the ECZ to conduct the delimitation of polling districts.
Delimitation is the demarcation of constituencies, wards and polling districts for electoral purposes.
“In view of the constitutional and statutory mandates, the Commission has commenced the process of conducting the delimitation of constituencies, wards and polling districts. The delimitation exercise is a prerequisite for the registration of voters,” Vice-President Wina said.
“The exercise is also important as it promotes effective representation of citizens and makes electoral services more essential to the people. Parliament approved a total budget of K55 million for 2019 delimitation of constituencies, wards and polling districts.”
As of  June 11 this year, according to Vice-president Wina, finance minister Margaret Mwanakatwe had released a total amount of K10 million to the Commission for the said exercise.
She reported to the House that the delimitation exercise was on schedule and went on to list some of the activities done by the ECZ, hitherto.
Vice-President Wina noted that the ECZ had briefed all district electoral officers and town clerks, council secretaries and district planning officers from all the 116 districts on their roles in the delimitation process and the criteria that would be used to demarcate the electoral boundaries.
Other activities undertaken by the ECZ were consultative meetings with stakeholders.
“On the 27th May, 2019, the Commission held a meeting with members of the House of Chiefs. The objective of the consultative meeting with the traditional leaders was to orient the traditional leaders on the delimitation process….” she explained.
“The Commission held a political parties’ liaison meeting on 20th June, 2019 to brief and engage political parties on the 2019 delimitation exercise. The Commission held a consultative meeting with civil society organisations and faith-based organisations to brief and engage them on the 2019 delimitation exercise.”
Meanwhile, Vice-President Wina pointed out that a similar consultative meeting was being scheduled for all members of parliament….
“All things being equal, the Commission is scheduled to make the district delimitation sittings in all the districts from 6th July, 2019 to 28th September, 2019 while provincial delimitation sittings will commence on 13th October, 2019 to 29th November, 2019,” noted Vice-President Wina.
“The Commission intends to conclude the delimitation exercise by December, 2019.”