Opposition Leader Approaches Constitutional Court Over Electoral Reforms

Opposition Renewal Democrats of Zimbabwe leader, Elton Mangoma has petitioned the Constitutional Court seeking an order to nullify sections of the Electoral Act as well as align others with the Constitution ahead of the setting of dates for the 2018 harmonised elections expected later this year.

According to the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, Mangoma has cited several sections of the Electoral Act as offending constitutional provisions.

He is seeking an order to present before the apex court, a substantive application to nullify the cited sections.

Mangoma, who is represented by Chris Mhike of the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, filed his application Wednesday seeking direct access to the apex court for a determination of relevant constitutional questions regarding the Electoral Act.

“The RDZ leader has requested to be allowed to file an application in the ConCourt seeking an order to compel Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Hon Ziyambi Ziyambi to ensure a comprehensive amendment of the current electoral law by the legislature ahead of the 2018 harmonised elections, so as to align pertinent provisions of the Electoral Act with the Constitution in terms of section 117(1) of the Constitution,” ZLHR said in a statement.

In the application, Mangoma, who cited Ziyambi, the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC), ZEC Chairperson Justice Priscilla Chigumba and Attorney-General Advocate Prince Machaya as respondents, argued that various provisions of the Electoral Act were out of sync with several constitutional provisions relating to elections.

The former MDC-T Treasurer General also wants the ConCourt to compel the respondents to ensure compliance with election-related provisions of the Constitution by relevant electoral officials, arguing his application was in the interest of justice.

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