The Roman Catholic Church has encouraged its congregants to register to vote ahead of the 2023 harmonised elections.
Archdiocese of Bulawayo Archbishop Alex Thomas noted that the church is playing an active role in educating congregants on the importance of participating in the election process.
Bulawayo is among the provinces with low numbers of registered voters and should there be no change to contain the situation, it will lose some constituencies during the delimitation process which is set to take place next year.
In an interview with CITE, Archbishop Thomas said the church is doing its best in encouraging people to register to vote.
“It is the duty of every citizen in the country to exercise his or her freedom to choose their civic leaders during the time of elections. This requires an adult person to be registered as a voter. There has been a lot of apathy among many people to register for voting. I encourage every eligible voter to register and exercise their duties responsibly,” he said.
“As a church we are very pro-active. I encourage priests to remind congregants of the importance of voting when they hold masses. The church has at least six parishes that are used as registration centers by the Zimbabwe Election Commission (ZEC). This shows the commitment that we have a church to ensure that citizens exercise their rights.”
Parish priest at Christ The King in Hillside, Father Similo Ncube, on Sunday urged congregants to register to vote in order for them to exercise their right to vote.
“There is a lot of voter apathy and it is sad that most young people and adults are not registered to vote. It is every citizen’s right to participate in the voting process. If need be we can arrange that people from ZEC come here one Sunday so that after mass people can actually register to vote,” he said.