Carter Center Urges Accreditation for 30 Election Observers; Delay Represents Unprecedented Obstruction to its Impartial Work

HARARE, ZIMBABWE (Aug. 22, 2023) — Despite the Zimbabwean government’s invitation to launch an election observation mission for the Aug. 23 elections, 30 of the Carter Center’s 48 short-term observers still have not received accreditation from Zimbabwean authorities.

The Carter Center has an international reputation for providing impartial, constructive election observation.  This delay in accreditation is unprecedented in its 30-plus years of observing elections. It represents a severe and unwarranted obstruction to the Center’s mission, inconsistent with commonly recognized and respected norms and practices.

The Center requests that accreditation for these observers be given today, Aug. 22, so it can fulfill its mission to provide an impartial assessment of the election. Any further delay in accreditation will prevent the Center from deploying these observers and will hinder its ability to observe polling, counting, and tabulation in many locations.

Furthermore, false and hostile comments about the Center and its work continue to be published in local and regional media. These attacks endanger Carter Center observers. We urge Zimbabwean authorities to publicly reiterate its welcome of The Carter Center and ensure the safety of its observers and staff.


Following an invitation from the Zimbabwean government, the Carter Center in July launched its mission to observe the upcoming Zimbabwean elections.

Attahiru Muhammadu Jega, former chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission of Nigeria, is leading the mission.

The Carter Center has observed more than 110 elections in 40 countries, including the United States, since 1989. It conducts its missions in accordance with the 2005 Declaration of Principles for International Election Observation, and its assessment and analysis of election are based on regional and international human rights obligations and standards for democratic elections, including the SADC Principles and Guidelines and the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance.


Contact: In Harare, Maria Cartaya,

The Carter Center
Waging Peace. Fighting Disease. Building Hope.

A not-for-profit, nongovernmental organization, The Carter Center has helped to improve life for people in over 80 countries by resolving conflicts; advancing democracy, human rights, and economic opportunity; preventing diseases; and improving mental health care. The Carter Center was founded in 1982 by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter, in partnership with Emory University, to advance peace and health worldwide.