Voting Rights of Zimbabweans in the Diaspora

The Constitution of Zimbabwe states that citizens who have reached the age
of 18 years may vote in local and national elections. However, the Electoral
Act states that only Zimbabwean citizens who are on diplomatic missions,
civil servants and members of the armed forces on external missions may vote
from abroad. This legal requirement effectively disenfranchises millions of
Zimbabwean citizens who live and work in other countries. Why the current
Zimbabwean authorities do not allow or enable their citizens to vote from
abroad in Zimbabwe’s national elections is contentious, especially ahead of
the 2023 general elections. This article uses the desktop approach to argue
that the right to vote in one’s country of origin by citizens working and living
abroad is a barometer of a nation’s deepening democratic practices, of which
elections are a lynchpin. This study hopes to contribute to international
human rights law. A study of voting from abroad contributes to discussions
regarding the evolving and multifaceted relationship between sending states
and their diaspora communities.

File Type: pdf
Categories: Journal of African Elections
Tags: Zimbabwe
journal of african elections vol20 number 1 transparent democratic governance in africa