BY DESMOND CHINGARANDE
HIGH COURT Judge Justice Never Katiyo yesterday reserved judgment in a case in which self-proclaimed Citizens Coalition for change (CCC) interim secretary-general Sengezo Tshabangu is seeking to bar recalled legislators from contesting the Saturday by-elections.
Tshabangu recalled 14 legislators and 17 councillors belonging to the CCC saying they had ceased to be members of the party.
The recalled legislators, however, successfully filed their nomination papers to contest the by-elections.
Tshabangu wants them stopped from contesting the polls under the CCC led by Nelson Chamisa.
Tshabangu has been dismissed as a Zanu PF impostor by Chamisa’s CCC.
Yesterday, Justice Katiyo asked how Tshabangu is an imposter.
Hatcliffe CCC legislator Agency Gumbo who had been co-joined said Tshabangu became an impostor by recalling legislators belonging to another party.
“The applicant has his party which he sponsored during the 2023 harmonised elections. He signed nomination papers for some candidates which participated in 2023 harmonised elections and were defeated by the real CCC candidates,” Gumbo said.
“All of them lost elections against candidates sponsored by Chamisa. After you have sponsored your own candidates and lose you then go to the next door and recall candidates of another party?.”
Tshabangu’s lawyer advocate Lewis Uriri asked the court to grant his application saying the recalled legislators were expelled and must not represent the CCC.
“CCC Chamisa candidates were not properly nominated. We only know one CCC party with Tshabangu as the interim secretary-general,” Uriri said.
He said they have challenged Chamisa to depose an affidavit denouncing Tshabangu, but he had not done so.
The lawyer representing the recalled legislators, Alec Muchadehama, asked the court to dismiss Tshabangu’s application saying it was in the wrong court.
Muchadehama said the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) could not have accepted nomination papers from recalled candidates if they were not members of the CCC.
He further pleaded with Justice Katiyo to dismiss the application saying the ballot had already been printed.
Zec lawyer Tawanda Kanengoni said they will abide by the court’s decision.