HomeLocal NewsZec blocks Gono’s Senate bid

Zec blocks Gono’s Senate bid

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THE Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) has disqualified former Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe governor Gideon Gono from filling the Buhera West senatorial seat, on the grounds that he is not a registered voter in the province.

MOSES MATENGA
STAFF REPORTER

The Zanu PF politburo had last year nominated and endorsed Gono as the party’s preferred replacement for the late Buhera South Senator-designate Kumbirai Kangai, who died a week before he was sworn in.

To expedite the process, Zanu PF national chairman Simon Khaya Moyo submitted Gono’s name to Zec on September 9 this year.

But, in a letter dated September 15 2014 and addressed to the Zanu PF national chairman, Zec chairperson Justice Rita Makarau shot down Gono’s political ambitions, saying he did not meet the set criterion.

Part of the letter reads: “We wish to advise Honourable Chairman that, according to our records, Dr Gideon Gono is not registered as a voter in any of the wards in Manicaland Province. This is notwithstanding the certificate of registration of a voter Serial No 454601K, issued at Makombe Building on 5 December 2013, attached to his nomination forms.”

Justice Makarau added: “As you are aware, Honourable Chairman, the constitutional function to register and transfer voters vested in the then Registrar-General of Voters in accordance with provisions of Clause 6 (2) of Part 3 of the Sixth Schedule to the Constitution for the purposes of the 31 July 2013 elections ceased when the voters’ roll for those elections closed on 10 July 2013. Any purported transfer of a voter by the Registrar-General after that date is of no force and effect and is constitutionally unsustainable.

“In view of that fact that Dr Gono is, on the face of it, not as of now resident in any ward in Manicaland, he then becomes disqualified to fill a vacancy in the province in terms of Section 45D (1) (d) of the Electoral Act (Chapter 2.13),” she said.

“Now that the function to register and transfer voters is vested in the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission, the most practical way forward around the current difficulty would have been for Gono to apply to the Commission to transfer his vote from Harare to Buhera West. Again, Honourable Chairman, we regret to advise that whilst we now have the constitutional mandate to register and transfer voters, and are willing and ready to register and transfer voters, there is no legal framework on voter registration and allied matters as envisaged in section 157 (1) (b) of the Constitution, a vacuum that has made us hold back on voter registration, thereby prejudicing not only Dr Gono in this case, but the generality of the electorate in Zimbabwe.”

Gono could not be reached for comment last night.

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