CCMG urges ECZ to Release a Road Map and Calendar for Electoral Activities for the 2026 Elections; Commends Release of Continuous Registration of Voters Data

CCMG is pleased with the steps taken by the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) to enhance the accessibility of the ongoing continuous voter registration (CVR) exercise, particularly for persons with disabilities. This includes the release of disaggregated data on voters with disabilities in its stakeholder engagement meeting on February 8, 2024. CCMG calls on the ECZ to continue to release this data as part of its monthly CVR updates, as it helps the ECZ and stakeholders ensure that elections are more accessible. CCMG also commends the ECZ for taking action to ensure that registration centres are accessible for persons with physical disabilities, including the construction/installation of ramps in 11 CVR centres. CCMG’s monitors are observing the CVR process and will continue to report on the accessibility and transparency of this important exercise.

“We call on ECZ to expedite the construction/installation of ramps in the remaining CVR centres currently operational as this will increase and enhance access for persons with disabilities. Additionally, we call on ECZ to ensure that prior to rolling out voter registration to additional 10 districts, registration centres identified in the district must be accessible and ramps must be installed in advance of the launch of the 3rd phase,” Bishop Andrew Mwenda said.

CCMG is encouraged by the ECZ’s recent engagement with stakeholders and calls on the ECZ to regularly and frequently engage stakeholders on the broader electoral process calendar to discuss electoral activities such as electoral reforms, boundary delimitation, voter registration, procurement and planning ahead of the 2026 general election. To this end, CCMG calls on the ECZ to release its road map and calendar for key electoral activities and preparations as we approach the 2026 elections. ECZ engagement and transparency is important for stakeholders to plan their interventions, and for the public to participate in electoral activities.

From January 1-31, 2024, CCMG’s CVR observers reported low registration of women voters and no applications for removal of the deceased from the register. These findings are consistent with the ECZ data for the same period. CCMG encourages women and first-time voters to take advantage of the CVR exercise to register and for civil society organisations, faith-based organisations, and other stakeholders to raise awareness and encourage citizens to register during this exercise. CCMG also calls on the general public to take advantage of the CVR

exercise and present necessary documents for the removal of deceased voters from the voter’s register. This is important as it helps to keep the voter’s register current. CCMG’s observers did not observe any political party agents present at the CVR centres and hereby calls on political parties to enhance the transparency of voter registration through their own monitoring as well as raise awareness of the exercise among their members.