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HARARE – Constitutional lawyer Professor Lovemore Madhuku has come out in defense of MDC leader Nelson Chamisa for firing elected Mayors across the country’s municipalities.
Professor Madhuku said MDC was within its rights to fire councillors as the principle is similar to that used for firing Members of Parliament and Senators.
“Our laws allow a party to act in such an undemocratic manner where people vote but the party decides who then remains in Parliament. So Chamisa (Nelson) has been silly enough to expose the undemocratic nature of our constitution,” Prof Madhuku said.
Chamisa has set himself on a collision course with residents after fired elected mayors of Masvingo, Victoria Falls, and the Bulawayo deputy Mayor in disregard of the local authorities that voted for those officials.
“Under the Parliamentary processes a party can expel someone from the party and write to the Speaker leading to the individual’s expulsion from Parliament. In local authorities the party first expels the individual before writing to the Minister of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing who will then notify the councillor of expulsion. The rule is the same,” said Prof Madhuku.
However, a well placed source said it would be difficult for the MDC to expel some of the councillors as they were elected under the MDC Alliance banner.
“These councillors were elected under MDC Alliance which is not a political party but a coalition. But now a political party wants to recall them which can create a legal hurdle. The councillors can easily be defiant using that legal technicality and retain their positions. So the best thing is to watch the space,” said the official. — ZOOMZimbabwe