Zimbabwe Indefinitely Suspends By-Election

Harare- Health minister Constantino Chiwenga has indefinitely suspended the holding of by-Elections which were scheduled to take place on 5 December 2020.

By-elections came about when troubled opposition MDC-T recalled several legislators and councilors from Parliament and Council on allegations of associating with a rival party MDC Alliance.

Through the amendment of the statutory instrument 225A of 2020, Publc Health Covid-19 Prevention, Containment and Treatment)(Amendment) Regulations, 2020 (No. 4), Chiwenga  suspended the holding of by elections during the period of the declaration.

“Pursuant to subsection (2), the holding of any by-election to fill a casual vacancy in parliament or in a local authority is, for the duration of the period of the declaration of covid-19 as a formidable epidemic disease, suspended and if such vacancy occurred while such declaration is in force, no part of the period from the date of such vacancy to the date of the end of the declaration shall be counted for the purposes of section 158(3) of the constitution,” reads the amendment.

Nomination court was supposed to sit on 9 October 2020 for the by-elections nominations to fill the vacancies. MDC Alliance spokesperson Fadzayi Mahere took a dig at the banning of by-elections.

The suspension of by-elections in circumstances where Zanu PF and its proxies continue to recall lawfully elected MPs and councillors is a vicious assault on the will of the people and the greatest threat to our democracy in as many decades. This is fascism. Democracy is dead. The people must and will fight back to defend their votes,” Mahere said.

The MDC accuses the rival Khupe faction of working in cahoots with the ruling Zanu PF as a way of decimating the popular opposition.

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