The Supreme Court has set July 5 to hear President Robert Mugabe’s appeal against an order by the Bulawayo High Court compelling him to call for by-elections in three House of Assembly constituencies of Bulilima East, Lupane East and Nkayi South in Matabelaland.
The seats fell vacant after the expulsion of Abednico Bhebhe, Njabuliso Mguni and Norman Mpofu from the MDC for alleged indiscipline.
“Take notice that this matter is set for hearing on the 5th of July 2012 before the Supreme Court in Harare at 9.30am or so soon thereafter as the matter may be heard,” read the notice of setdown by the Registrar of the Supreme Court dated May 12.
The setdown came seven months after Mugabe lodged his appeal against Bulawayo High Court judge Justice Nicholas Ndou’s order for him to call for by-elections in the three constituencies. The MPs have since rejoined the MDC-T with Bhebhe being voted the party’s deputy organising secretary at the party’s congress in Bulawayo last year.
Justice Ndou in November last year ordered Mugabe to gazette dates for the by-elections in the three constituencies within 14 days of the order.
However, Mugabe, through Fortune Chimbaru of the Civil Division in the Attorney-General’s Office, appealed against Ndou’s order arguing he could not be forced to gazette dates for the by-elections.
Mugabe is the appellant in the matter while Bhebhe, Mguni and Mpofu are cited as the 1st, 2nd and 3rd respondents.