By Wamunyima Walubita
The electoral commission of Zambia (ecz) has appealed for more funding if continuous voter registration exercise is to be a reality.
Speaking during the second symposium with Members of Parliament, at the Mulungushi international conference centre monday morning, ECZ chairperson Justice Florence Mumba says government has a lot to do in order to make the continuous voter registration exercise a reality.
Justice Mumba explains that despite the law allowing the for continuous voter registration being in place since 2001, eight years down the line, the law has still not been implemented mainly due to lack of funds.
She says in 2002, the commission submitted a budget of k52 billion of which only k300 million was approved, k962 million in 2003, while no funds were allocated in 2005 and 2006.
Justice Mumba adds that in 2007, a budget of 199 billion was submitted to the ministry of finance and national planning and only k84 million was approved, with no allocation being provided in 2008.
She says government has only allocated K5billion in this year's budget while the commission requires k48 billion to commence the exercise.
Justice Mumba explains that the amount will allow the commission to open an average of 10 mobile registration centers in every district thought-out the country for a limited time.
She was however quick to note that this amount does not include the acquisition of equipment, which she says will be purchased through the help of cooperating partners coordinated by the United Nations Development Programme.
Justice Mumba has since appealed to Members of Parliament to ensure that the commission is funded adequately for the successful implementation of continuous voter registration exercise.
And justice Mumba has called on parliamentarians to take interest in the current status of the department of the national registration whose register is still manual.
She says the national registration office is one institution that the commission needs to consult with regularly to ensure that the voters' register is current.