Electoral Court hears Mliswa’s case today

via Electoral Court hears Mliswa’s case today | The Herald June 8, 2015

THE Electoral Court will today hear an application by ousted former Zanu-PF Mashonaland West provincial chairman Temba Mliswa in which he is seeking postponement of the Hurungwe West by-election.

The by-election is scheduled for Wednesday.

Mliswa is standing as an independent candidate in the by-election.

He claims the army is intimidating his supporters.

Justice Tendai Uchena will hear the matter which was brought to the court under a certificate of urgency last week.

Mliswa’s lawyer Mr Msindo Hungwe of Kadzere, Hungwe and Mandevere law practice yesterday confirmed the matter will be heard today in the judge’s chambers.

“It has been set for tomorrow (today) at 10am before Justice Uchena and we are ready to argue the matter,” said Mr Hungwe.

Sixteen by-elections are scheduled to be held countrywide.

Mliswa accuses Zanu-PF and the party secretary for administration Cde Ignatius Chombo of enlisting the services of the military to instil fear.

“These soldiers are moving around threatening people perceived to be loyal to me with assault

and death if they continue supporting me or vote for me on the election day,” he said.

Mliswa, who claims to be in possession of video evidence to prove his fears, stated in his papers that Cde Chombo addressed several campaign meetings in company of his rival Cde Keith Guzah at which he issued threats against his supporters.

“There is widespread fear among the voters in Hurungwe West to such an extent that a free and fair election is now impossible,” said Mliswa.

He further stated that the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission and its chairperson Justice Rita Makarau refused to take corrective measures against the unlawful actions of Zanu-PF, Cde Chombo and Cde Guzah, who are also listed as respondents in the matter. Mr Mliswa said in view of the obtaining situation in Hurungwe West constituency, he had no option but to approach the Electoral Court for relief.

He wants the court to defer the by-election until the environment is conducive for the holding of a free and fair election.

“Given the refusal of the first (Zec) and second (Justice Makarau) respondents to perform their constitutional duties to ensure a free and fair election, only an order in terms of the draft order will remedy the situation,” said Mliswa.

Zec and its 10 co-respondents were still to respond to the court application.