Senate president Mabel Chinomona today told Citizens Coalition for Change senators who were recalled by self-proclaimed CCC interim secretary-general Sengezo Tshabangu that their recall was not for debate in the Upper House. They should go to court to settle their dispute.
She said this after nine senators who had been recalled had left the House but returned later to take their seats.
Here is what transpired:
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: Order, I am seeing Hon. Members who were on the list as having been recalled, walking into the House. I do not understand what is taking place. Hon. Members, can anyone shed light.
HON. SEN. MLOTSHWA: We as CCC, do not recognise the signature, so we are at a point where our leaders of CCC have not recalled anyone.
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: It is not me personally, who is recalling you. That matter cannot be resolved here, handiro dare racho. What was done wrongly should be done outside and be corrected, then we are also given a letter that, it was not supposed to have been done and I think the courts are there to do that. We do not know who is who in your party.
HON. SEN. TIMBA: You mentioned in your announcement that the person that has communicated to you claimed to be from CCC.
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: Yes.
HON. SEN. TIMBA: Meaning that you do not know whether they were from CCC or not?
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: We receive letters as usual.
HON. SEN. TIMBA: Meaning anyone from the street can write a letter and say that we are from CCC – [HON. SENATORS: Inaudible interjections.] – I seek your protection Hon. President.
THE HON. PRESIDENT: Can we have order Hon. Members.
HON. TIMBA: Meaning that anyone in the street can write a letter, you receive it and you come and announce it here that they can claim that they are from ZANU PF and that they are recalling the following Members of ZANU PF and you just read it out. Is that what you are suggesting?
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: It is not our duty to verify who wrote this and that. We do not know your membership. Go to the courts and clear your names.
HON. TIMBA: Hon. President, with all due respect, we are not a banana republic. We have institutions, when we came into Parliament, names are given to you by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) that these are the persons from ZANU PF, by name, province and that communication comes to this institution. We communicate with you as parties not just CCC, that the following persons are the leaders of the party in Parliament, whether it is a Chief Whip or Leader of the House. That communication comes from us as political parties. You cannot pretend that you do not know the people from ZANU PF or people from CCC.
THE HON. PRESIDENT OF SENATE: So, what are you saying?
HON. SEN. TIMBA: What I am saying is that it is important that when you receive a letter, you are not supposed to read a letter which comes from the street without you verifying whether or not that letter is coming from a party represented here in Parliament.
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