HomeLocal NewsMatambanadzo to challenge Kwekwe Central seat ruling

Matambanadzo to challenge Kwekwe Central seat ruling

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KWEKWE Central Member of the House of Assembly Masango Matambanadzo, whose parliamentary seat was declared vacant by the Electoral Court on Monday while he was attending Parliament in Harare, has said he will challenge the ruling.

BLESSED MHLANGA,STAFF REPORTER

Through his lawyer Tendai Masawi, Matambanadzo said he would file an application for recession of judgment because he was unaware that the election petition by MDC-T losing candidate Blessing Chebundo was due to be heard on Monday.

“We were not informed of the set-down date by our corresponding lawyers in Bulawayo from Mudenda law firm and as a result when the matter was heard the MP was attending Parliament,” Masawi said.

He also said he would apply for a stay of execution of the judgment until the matter is heard on merits.

Electoral Court judge Justice Andrew Mutema sitting in Bulawayo delivered a default judgment following an application by Chebundo, who unsuccessfully contested the July 31 parliamentary election.

Justice Mutema’s order read: “It is declared that the respondent (Matambanadzo) was not duly elected as a member of the House of Assembly for Kwekwe Central in the harmonised July 31 elections. The parliamentary seat for Kwekwe be and is hereby declared vacant (and) Zec (Zimbabwe Electoral Commission) to set a date for the elections within 10 days of the order and the cost of this petition is borne by the respondent.”

But, Masawi said the will of the people could not be subverted because of a technicality.

“We will approach the court by Wednesday (today) so that the matter can be heard on merit because the will of the people who voted on July 31 cannot be subverted by a legal technicality,” Masawi said. Lawyer James Magodora said the ruling meant Matambanadzo would not be able to attend Parliament because the seat was already declared vacant.

“That seat is now vacant and Matambanadzo cannot keep attending Parliament,” he said.

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