The Anti Voter Apathy Project (AVAP) has committed itself to increase the number of voters to participate in the 2011 general elections through carrying out intensive voter education in communities around the country.
AVAP Northern Province Coordinator Kelly Kashiwa said his organisation would ensure that many Zambians register as voters this year in readiness for next year’s tripartite elections.
Mr. Kashiwa said Zambians should take elections seriously because voting for or against political leaders was part of their constitutional right.
He was speaking during a sensitization workshop on decentralisation and the electoral process which was held at the Isoka council chamber yesterday.
Mr. Kashiwa explained that voter apathy should be discouraged at all costs in order to sustain the country’s democratic principles.
He said AVAP would soon start voter education in the province in order to encourage electorates to register as voters when the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) commences voter registration exercise later this year.
He stated that his organisation would want to complement the work of the ECZ by ensuring that people were adequately sensitized before the exercise begins.
Mr. Kashiwa urged civic leaders and traditional rulers to help in disseminating information on the ongoing mobile issuance of National Registration Cards so that many people, especially in rural areas acquire the NRCs.
He observed that the exercise was very important because it has a direct bearing on the number of voters to be captured by the ECZ for next year’s general elections.
Mr. Kashiwa further urged youths in Northern Province who have attained voting age to register in large numbers so that they are not disfranchised in future elections.
The four-day AVAP workshop on decentralisation and the electoral process is being attended by ward councillors, area development committee members and government employees respectively.