Zimbabwe Speaker of Parliament Jacob Mundenda told Parliament today that the recalling of 18 Citizens Coalition for Change legislators, 13 from the lower house and five from the Senate, still stands as the effective date of the recall was 7 November, long before the High Court ordered the recalls to stop.
He said this in response to a query from Chipinge South legislator Clifford Hlatywayo.
Q & A:
HON. C. HLATYWAYO: On a point of order. Mr. Speaker, yesterday you informed the House that you had received a letter from one Tshabangu, illegally recalling CCC Members of Parliament. We informed you Mr. Speaker that there is a court process that was underway and a judgement from the court was there to stop any recalls from one Tshabangu. Yesterday, Mr. Speaker, you promised the House that you are going to reinstate the Citizens Coalition for Change Members of Parliament after receiving that judgement. I understand, Mr. Speaker that you have received that judgement and we expect you to then action your promise to reinstate Members of Parliament who were illegally recalled by Tshabangu.
THE HON. SPEAKER: You must be very careful in interpreting legal language. The court made an interim relief and the interim relief was made after I had made the announcement. The delivery of that relief was given after the announcement, you must be very logical. Further, the notice of recall is effective from the date of the letter which is the 7th of November 2023.
If you read paragraph four of that interim relief, it says the respondent, Tshabangu, was indicted from making any further recalls from that sitting of that court. There is no way the Judge would say no to make any further recalls when in fact the recalls were made. So, in my discussion with Hon. Hlatyawayo, in the presence of Hon. Hwende and Hon. Gumbo, the lawyer in my board room, I explained to them having been sent as emissaries by CCC Members of Parliament that as the judge indicated, the matter will be finalised, that is the urgent application, will be finalised on Monday. After the finalisation of that matter on Monday, the National Assembly Speaker and the Senate President will be directed in terms of the status of the first respondent, Tshabangu, that is what we agreed on yesterday. I thought we understood each other.
So, the recall of the 7th of November stands and is, not affected by the interim relief and further, do not be misled by News Day and Daily News who totally misunderstood that interim relief. So, I rule that the notice read yesterday stands and those Members who were affected can they kindly leave the Chamber.
HON. HWENDE: On a point of clarity!
THE HON. SPEAKER: There is nothing clearer than what I have stated. I am going to wait for the determination on Monday in terms of not only yesterday’s calls and those that have happened before – [HON. HWENDE: Can I approach the Chair] – but I was with you yesterday and I thought you understood me.