Judgement reserved in case CCC MPs are challenging removal from ballot

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By Staff Reporter

The High Court has reserved its judgement in a matter Sengezo Tshabangu, claiming to be Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) interim secretary general, is seeking to block recalled MPs and senators from contesting in Saturday’s by-elections under the party’s name.

Justice Never Katiyo sitting at the Harare High Court reserved his judgement after hearing from both parties.

In his application, Tshabangu the second applicant cited CCC as first applicant with the recalled 22 members and the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) cited as respondents.

On Monday CCC sought to be joined to the proceedings in support of its recalled members.

Alec Muchadehama who was representing the recalled members said there was no need for the judge to entertain a case which “has been overtaken by events.”

“Ballot papers have already been printed and sent to constituencies in readiness for the election.

“All systems are now in place for the election to be heard. To take submissions already overtaken by events will be pointless,” he said.

Muchadehama also argued that the High Court had no jurisdiction to hear Tshabangu’s application.

“This court has no jurisdiction to entertain this matter. It does not matter that the application is labeled as seeking a declaration.

“It is an electoral matter which ought to have been filed in the electoral court.

Agency Gumbo who was representing CCC cited as the respondent concurred with Muchadehama.

Making his submissions, Tshabangu’s lawyer, Lewis Uriri said CCC which later joined proceedings was bogus.

“An allegation was that Tshabangu was an impostor. That allegation failed. This court found the recall was not false. This court having validated that recall, the nomination court sat on November 7.  There was never an allegation that there are two CCC  but one. That CCC which existed is the same which sponsored candidates on 23 August and December 9,” he said, urging that his client’s application should be upheld.

Tshabangu, claiming to be CCC interim secretary general, recalled 15 MPs and eight senators in October stating they were no longer party members.

The recalled lawmakers filed an urgent chamber application which was dismissed by the High Court ruling that they did not prove they were still CCC members.

Munamato Mutevedzi sitting at the Harare High Court also ruled that their failure to cite CCC was fatal on their end.

To this end, the recalled legislators noted an appeal which was struck off the roll by the Supreme Court after papers were wrongly filed.