The AG ditched Mudede after the High Court ruled in favour of Sebastian Piroro, a Zimbabwean whose application for a passport was turned down by Mudede.
Justice Susan Mavangira had given Mudede until 14 April to renew Piroros travel document. Mudede has instead defied the ultimatum and has indicated his intention to appeal. He has since contracted Mushonga, Mutsvairo and Associates to fight Justice Mavangiras judgment.
Piroro, who resides in Canada and was born and educated in Zimbabwe. Piroro is represented by Bryant Elliot of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) in his quest to renew his passport.
Mushonga, Mutsvairo and Associates wrote to ZLHR on 18 May confirming they had taken over the case. The law firm said it had written to the Registrar of the High Court pointing out that Justice Mavangira was yet to release reasons for her ruling against Mudede to enable an appeal.
In response, ZLHR informed the lawyers that Mudedes window to appeal had closed on 3 May. ZLHR said Mudede had no option but to comply with Justice Mavangiras ruling. In the circumstances, unless you confirm by return that your client is agreeable to complying with the Court Order forthwith, we will have no option but to bring Contempt of Court proceedings against him, ZLHR wrote on 24 May.
In terms of the Court Order, your client had 10 days from the date of the Order within which to renew our clients Zimbabwe Passport. Your client has failed, to date, to comply with that Court Order, according to the ZLHR letter to Mudedes lawyers.In terms of Rule 30 (a) of the Supreme Court Rules, if your client had intended to appeal, he had 15 days within which to file a Notice of Appeal.
This time limit commenced on the date of the Court Order, namely 31 March 2011. With respect, it does not commence only from the date on which the reasons for judgment are delivered, wrote ZLHR.
Piroros passport was issued in 2000 and expired last year. True to past form, Mudede refused to renew the document alleging that Piroro was a dual citizen on account of his father being born in Mozambique. Mudede said Piroro should first renounce his purported Mozambique citizenship-which he does not hold- before he could proceed further and obtain a new Zimbabwe passport.
Mudedes office turned down Piroros application to renew his passport and indicated that the Registrar-General could only do so after he renounced his purported foreign citizenship. Mudede argued that Piroro was a Mozambican citizen by descent and that he should have renounced his purported citizenship between 6 July 2001 and 6 January 2002 under the provisions of section 9 (7) of the Citizenship of Zimbabwe Act.
Mudede argued that although Piroro was born in Zimbabwe and had spent most of his life in the country he had lost his Zimbabwean citizenship and was now regarded as an alien. Piroros father Saidon was born in Mozambique, migrated to Zimbabwe around 1955 and never returned to his country of birth.
He became a citizen of Zimbabwe by registration and had a Zimbabwean identity number. His mother, born in Marondera, was a citizen of Zimbabwe by birth. Disagreeing with Mudede Justice Mavangira, who heard the matter in March, ruled that Piroro was a citizen of Zimbabwe by birth in terms of Section 5 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe.
The High Court Judge declared that the provisions of Section 9 (7) of the Citizenship of Zimbabwe Act (Chapter 4:01) in so far as it relates to citizenship by birth are ultra vires the powers vested in the Parliament of Zimbabwe in terms of Section 9 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe and are in consequence of no force or effect. The ruling was a landmark in Zimbabwean law, as it can be applied to assist thousands of Zimbabweans who have similar circumstances to those of Piroro and who in recent years have been unlawfully stripped of their citizenship by Mudede under the guise of enforcing amendments to the Citizenship of Zimbabwe Act.
HARARE - Dumped by the Attorney-General but determined to strip a Canada-based Zimbabwean man of his citizenship, the Registrar-General Tobaiwa Mudede (pictured) has hired a private firm to push for his quest.