Con-Court throws out renewal team case

HARARE - The Constitutional Court yesterday dismissed the application by 21 MDC renewal team legislators, who were challenging their ejection from Parliament.

The 21, who were elected into office on a Morgan Tsvangirai-led MDC ticket, were expelled from parliament after ditching the party and forming the United Movement for Democratic Change.

Following their expulsion, they filed an urgent Constitutional Court application, seeking to nullify the dismissal and to stop by-elections.

However, the full Constitutional Court bench, led by Chief Justice Godfrey Chidyausiku, unanimously agreed that the application lacked merit.

“After considering the papers filed in this matter and hearing submissions by both counsels, the court unanimously agreed that the application has no merit and is hereby dismissed with costs,” Chidyausiku said.

He said reasons for the judgment would be availed in due course.

Soon after the ruling, MDC renewal spokesperson Jacob Mafume told journalists that his party would not take part in the by-elections without reforms.

He said the voters’ roll was in shambles and was not conducive for them to participate in the elections.

Mafume claimed Zanu PF and Tsvangirai’s MDC had ganged up against his group.

He said it was clear that the seats that had previously been occupied by his party members had been “donated” to Zanu PF.

“Zanu PF will accept the donation with open hands,” Mafume said.

Lovemore Madhuku, the booted legislators’ lawyer, told the court that his clients were still MDC.

He said despite the party having split into two formations, it was difficult to identify the legitimate group, adding the case was still pending at the High Court.

He said the Tsvangirai-led formation had no right to call for the expulsion of his clients.

“A split is determined in terms of common law. In this case, there is no political party concerned and Section 129 (1) (k) of the Constitution does not apply,” he said.

He said the decision to expel his clients was grossly irrational.

Simplicius Chihambakwe, who was representing Speaker of the National Assembly Jacob Mudenda, said the group that remained at Harvest House was the original MDC.

He queried why the MDC renewal team had not approached the court when an announcement for their dismissal was made.

In the application, the politicians cited Mudenda, Parliament of Zimbabwe, president Robert Mugabe, Zimbabwe Electoral Commission chairperson (Zec), Rita Makarau and Zec as respondents.

Those that were affected by the expulsion are, Biti (Harare East), Willias Madzimure (Kambuzuma), Paul Madzore (Glen View South), Solomon Madzore (Dzivaresekwa), Lucia Matibenga (Kuwadzana), Samuel Sipepa Nkomo (Lobengula), Roselyn Nkomo (Tsholotsho), Reggie Moyo (Luveve), Moses Manyengavana (Highfield West), Albert Mhlanga (Pumula), Bekithemba Nyathi (Mpopoma), Settlement Chikwinya (Mbizo), Arnold Tsunga (Chikanga-Dangamvura), Gladys Mathe (proportional representation), Judith Muzhavazhe (proportional representation), Evelyn Masaiti (proportional representation) and Gorden Moyo (Makokoba). Also recalled from the august House are senators Sekai Holland (Chizhanje), Rorana Muchihwa (Chikomo), Watchy Sibanda (Matabeleland South) and Patrick Chitaka (Manicaland).

The 21 claim that their fundamental rights to equal protection and benefit of the law was infringed by the decision to expel them from parliament.

Comments (12)

"Reasons to follow" as always. We are still waiting for the reasons for allowing the elections to take place in 2013 in violation of the constitution. Yet another judgement without reasons.

tony reeler - 15 April 2015

They can go vending, like everybody else. I have seen there is still some space along Nelson Mandela Avenue. Vanogona kuhodha maSandak at corner Chinhoyi and Bank Street. The gravy train is gone. Good luck, ex-MPs.

machakachaka - 15 April 2015

Reasons to follow, yet you have made a judgement based on those reasons. Why not just announce the reasons ? . We might have to legislate a law that when a judgement is given there must be a detailed statement on the reasons for and against, The constitutional court is getting away with murder,

Chen - 15 April 2015

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CARTRIDGE GALLERY - 15 April 2015

Vaigoda kuramba vari ma MP ivo vakapinda ne MDC T ticket? Handiti ivo vaakunzi MDC Renewal? Saka it's common sense that they formed a different party called MDC Renewal so it was a fair judgment. Madhuku ndiye lawyer ravo futi? Ko madhuku haasi leader we NCA Party here, their rivals? Iyi nyaya hapana kwayaienda iyi iri bingirishi.

redemption - 15 April 2015

kkkkkkkkk ahhhhhhh nharo dzavo dziri pakutii ivo vaka former bato tht alone z enuf reason kkkkkkk bhazi remari rasimuka and they hv realized they hv soiled their pant vakuwawata join us pakutsvaga mabasa amana nguva inopera murukumatare isu takatomira muque yepromised 2 million jobs kkkkk imi muchizhambira chidyausiku kkkkkk

minox - 15 April 2015

Thats why they say politics is dirty guys

wil - 16 April 2015

The 21 MPs betrayed those of us who voted for MDC (not individuals). It's the same betrayal by W Ncube (that lost us the needed margin to prevent a run-off). I'm a bit worried by the lack of forward thinking by these "lawyers". Is it immaturity?

Nathanjo Yomo - 16 April 2015

the concourt is full of shit they are useless judges sitting in this court doing nothing

CASTON - 16 April 2015

What else does anyone expect from the intellectually deficient Godfrey Chidyausiku and his bootlicking cronies? When Zanu pf implodes the likes of the judiciary will be on their knees begging for forgiveness, and to be spared from a tortuous lynching. ,

Noose Sponsor - 18 April 2015

I am amazed to see judges wearing their hoods during court sessions. I am sure this must a real hot affair to sit on the bench wearing such clownish looking hot attireI am sure this must have been appropriate days before heating systems. why would one want to wear that in the tropical environment such as Zimbabwe. One of the colonial traditions that should have been disbanded is the wearing of these clownish hoods. Come on, let's get independent.

tonym e - 19 April 2015

I am amazed to see judges wearing their hoods during court sessions. I am sure this must a real hot affair to sit on the bench wearing such clownish looking hot attireI am sure this must have been appropriate days before heating systems. why would one want to wear that in the tropical environment such as Zimbabwe. One of the colonial traditions that should have been disbanded is the wearing of these clownish hoods. Come on, let's get independent.

tonym e - 19 April 2015

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