Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Zimbabwe: Zim Keeps UNDP Waiting On Poll Funding

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THE government, which has requested financial assistance from the international community to bankroll general elections likely to be held this year, is procrastinating a United Nations needs assessment mission to visit Zimbabwe to determine the country's requirements for the plebiscite.
Earlier last month, Finance Minister Tendai Biti and Justice and Legal Affairs Minister Patrick Chinamasa wrote on behalf of government to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) resident representative requesting at least US$250 million for both the referendum and the general elections.

UNDP had responded by saying it would need to dispatch a fact-finding mission to Zimbabwe to access how much the country would need for the harmonised polls ZANU-PF wants held by June 29.
But The Financial Gazette can exclusively reveal that Harare is still to respond to a letter by the UN Focal Point of February 15, stating the regular terms of reference of the proposed needs assessment mission for consideration by the government.

"As of 15 March 2013, the United Nations awaits clearance from the Government of Zimbabwe on the dispatching of the needs assessment mission," a spokesperson of the UNDP disclosed in response to questions from The Financial Gazette this week.

According to the UNDP, a needs assessment mission constitutes the first step in responding to a request from a member state for electoral support submitted to the UN.

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