Electoral Court says it has no jurisdiction over election of Mayors

The Electoral Court on Thursday ruled that it had no power to adjudicate over the election of Mayors in Zimbabwe.

Douglas Mwonzora
Douglas Mwonzora

The ruling by Judge Lavender Makoni in Harare followed an urgent court application with the Electoral Court, that was filed by the MDC-T on Tuesday.

The party was seeking to stop outgoing Local Government minister Ignatius Chombo from interfering with the election of mayors. In his judgment Judge Makoni lamented the lack of powers the Electoral Court has to hear cases involving the election of mayors.

MDC-T spokesman Douglas Mwonzora said he was surprised by the ruling because every election in the country is overseen by the Electoral Court.

‘The electoral process can never be complete until everyone has been elected, and this includes Mayors and chairmen of provincial councils,’ Mwonzora said.

The latest wrangle between Chombo and the MDC-T stems from moves by the party to recommend non-elected members Obert Gutu and Mandla Nyathi, as its preferred candidates for Harare and Bulawayo.

Last month, Local Government secretary Killian Mupingo sent out a circular to all local authorities directing Provincial Administrators that only elected councillors were eligible to contest the mayoral post.

The MDC-T will now be filing an application in the Constitutional Court to hear the matter. The papers are expected to be filed on Friday morning. – SW Radio Africa News

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