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Joyce Kazembe

17 September 2021

Joyce Kazembe
BornJoyce Laetitia
EmployerZimbabwe Electoral Commission
Known forBeing a ZEC commissioner

Joyce Laetitia Kazembe is a Zimbabwean gender activist, founder member and trustee of the Women and Law in Southern Africa (WLSA), Women's Action Group and Women in Law and Development in Africa. Kazembe is also a Commissioner with the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) where she served as the Chairperson of the Media Monitoring Committee before her appointment as the commission's spokesperson and chairperson of the National Multi-Party Liaison Committee in September 2021.

Contents

Background

She is a member of the Roman Catholic Church.[1]

Education

Kazembe attained a University of Zimbabwe Bachelor of Administration (Honours) degree with the 2nd best student award in 1983.[2]

Career

Soon after attaining her University degree, Joyce Kazembe was appointed a Research Fellow in the Centre for Applied Social Sciences (CASS) in the Faculty of Social Studies at the University of Zimbabwe where she served for five years from 1984 to 1988. During the same period, she was also a Tutorial and Teaching Assistant in the Department of Political and Administrative Studies until she left mid-1990. Kazembe then worked for seventeen years (Mid 1990 – 2008) as Administrator, Trustee, Chief Public Relations and Coordinator of SAPES Books Publications and, subsequently, Bureau Chief at the Southern African Political Economy Series (SAPES) Trust.[1]

She has served on a number of Boards, including the Zimbabwe Constitutional Commission in 1999, the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) in 2001 and Mambo Press among others. She has participated at a number of regional and international conferences and was among the contributors to the Windhoek Declaration wherein the international community affirmed its commitment to press freedom.[3]

She was appointed and served for six years as Commissioner in the Electoral Supervisory Commission before its dissolution in 2006. Subsequently, she was appointed Deputy Chairperson of the newly instituted Zimbabwe Electoral Commission from 2007 to the end of March 2016. She was re-appointed Commissioner for a further six-year term in July 2016. She is an inaugural member of the Council of the Women's University in Africa (WUA) Council and that of the Catholic University in Zimbabwe.[1]

In September 2021, Joyce Kazembe was appointed ZEC spokesperson and chairperson of the National Multi-Party Liaison Committee replacing Commissioner Qubani Moyo whose tenure of office had expired.[4]

Positions Held

  • Commissioner and Administrator of the Zimbabwe Constitutional Commission (1999-2000)
  • Governor - Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (2001–2002)
  • Advisor - Austrian Development Agency in Zimbabwe (1998 – 2000)
  • Councillor – the Catholic University in Zimbabwe (1988 – 2007) and the Women’s University in Africa (2002 – 2008)
  • Vice President- the International Catholic Union of the Press (1992-)
  • Vice President (Southern Africa) - the African Association of Political Science (1995 – 2001)
  • Island Hospice in Zimbabwe Board (2002–)
  • Catholic Church News (1998 – 2001)
  • Moto (2000 – 2003) Editorial Boards
  • Mambo Press Board of Directors (2005–2010)[2]

Comments On Vote Rigging & Hiring Of Army Personnel

In 2018 during a panel discussion at a 50-50 Advocacy Campaign and Women’s Manifesto Launch, Kazembe claimed that the set-up at polling stations made it almost impossible for election rigging as all political parties would have representatives observing proceedings at any given time. She said:

"We are often accused of rigging, but it is not possible to rig elections.I can tell you within the polling station we have representatives of political parties, observers and the media as well as civil society, so it is impossible to rig elections."

She was booed by the house which disapproved of her statement, accusing ZEC of bias in favour of Zanu PF.

Speaking on the hiring of former soldiers and security services by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission, Kazembe said they were hired on merit just like any other Zimbabwean who had applied for the job. She said:

"We had a full-time commission in 2007 and that is when we advertised in the papers and on social media and they applied. They were shortlisted whether they were ex-teachers or soldiers, whoever came first was appointed."

[5]

Books

Kazembe has published a number of books, wherein she contributed to national policy dialogues and intellectual discourse.[3]

She co-authored five WLSA research books on how the law affects women differently in its application.[1]

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 COMMISSIONERS, Zimbabwe Electoral Commission, Published: No Date Given, Retrieved: September 17, 2021
  2. 2.0 2.1 Election Resource Centre Zimbabwe, Facebook, Published: May 9, 2016, Retrieved: September 17, 2021
  3. 3.0 3.1 JOYCE LAETITIA KAZEMBE, UNESCO, Published: No Date Given, Retrieved: September 17, 2021
  4. Joyce Kazembe Appointed ZEC Spokesperson, Pindula News, Published: September 17, 2021, Retrieved:September 17, 2021
  5. ZEC’s Joyce Kazembe says rigging not possible, barracked, NewZimbabwe, Published: March 7, 2018, Retrieved: September 17, 2021

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