HARARE – An opposition MDC MP has called for the impeachment of President Emmerson Mnangagwa over the deteriorating economic situation in the country saying the environment has become untenable.
Contributing to questions without notice session in the National Assembly yesterday MDC’s Chitungwiza North MP Godfrey Sithole pleaded with Zanu PF legislators to join hands with his party to impeach Mnangagwa “so that we can save the country from total collapse”.
“I think this is a matter of national interest which has nothing to do with political affiliations so I call upon this house, all legislators from across the political divide to unite as we did in November 2017 when we marched for the abdication of…Mugabe and consider impeaching the current president,” Sithole said on a point of privilege.
In making his ruling, National Assembly Speaker Jacob Mudenda, however, advised Sithole to move an impeachment motion.
“I advise the member that he should bring a motion to that effect in this house instead,” Mudenda counselled.
In November 2017, thousands of Zimbabweans from across the political and social divide joined hands in a march that culminated in the resignation of former president Robert Mugabe, albeit with the aid of the military.
Sithole’s calls come amid fears by Mnangagwa that there was an inside plot in his Zanu PF party to impeach him.
Mnangagwa made the claim ahead of the July 30 elections during a healing and reconciliation workshop held in Harare in May saying he had been briefed by intelligence officials of a brewing plot to dislodge him from power.
The plot, according to Mnangagwa, was being hatched by some of the candidates who won Zanu PF’s disputed party primary polls and were allegedly angling to team up with the opposition to impeach him in the ninth Parliament.
“I gather from intelligence that some of those who have won these primary elections have two minds.
“They have joined the Zanu PF wagon using various means, money included, to be elected with a possible view that once in Parliament, they will work together and move a motion of impeachment,” he said to odd applause from candidates who contested in the primary elections, as if to confirm the plot.
Mnangagwa, however, warned his rivals that the impeachment route was no stroll in the park.
“There are two things I would want to let them know. First, you must realise that the Constitution provides the basis of impeachment and such basis must be fulfilled before impeachment proceedings begin,” he said at the time.
“Secondly, our Constitution provides an instrument to chuck out from Parliament any member whom we think is not Zanu PF any more.
“So iwe nemoyo wako, nengirozi yako naMwari wako ziva paumire (deep inside you and with the help of your angels and your God, you know where you stand.”
Impeachment refers to a process used to charge, try, and remove public officials for misconduct while in office.
The national charter provides for the removal of a sitting president or vice president through a resolution by half of the total membership of Parliament.
A president can only be removed from office if found to have engaged in acts of serious misconduct; failure to obey, uphold or defend the Constitution; wilful violation of the Constitution or inability to perform the functions of the office because of physical or mental incapacity.