President Mugabe yesterday proclaimed October 22 as the date for the by-election in Norton, after the seat fell vacant following the expulsion of Mr Christopher Mutsvangwa from Zanu-PF. The Head of State and Government and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces made the announcement in a Statutory Instrument of a Government Gazette published yesterday.
The Nomination Court is expected to sit on September 6 in Chinhoyi, Mashonaland West to receive nominations and if more than one candidate is duly nominated, polling will proceed on October 22.
In the notice, President Mugabe said Norton constituency became vacant in terms of Section 129 (1) (k) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe by reason of a legislator having ceased to belong to a political party which he was a member of when elected to Parliament.
In terms of Section 39(2) of the Electoral Act, said President Mugabe in the notice, he is required to issue a proclamation ordering a new election in terms of Section 38. He said the Speaker of the National Assembly, Advocate Jacob Mudenda, had duly notified him of the existence of the vacancy.
“Now therefore, under and by virtue of the powers vested in the President as aforesaid, I do, by this proclamation (a) order new elections for constituency of Norton and (b) fix Tuesday the 6th of September, 2016, as the date on which the nomination court shall sit, commencing at 10 o’clock in the morning, at the Magistrate Court, Gerrad Drive, Chinhoyi, for the purpose of receiving nominations of candidates for election as member of National Assembly constituency and (c) fix Saturday the 22nd October, 2016, as the day on which a poll shall be taken if a poll becomes necessary in terms of section 46 (17)(c) of the Electoral Act (Chapter 2:13),” reads the notice.
Section 129 (1) (k) of the Constitution states that: “The seat of a Member of Parliament becomes vacant if the member has ceased to belong to the political party of which he or she was a member when elected to Parliament and the political party concerned by written notice to the Speaker or the President of the Senate, as the case may be, has declared that the member has ceased to belong to it.”
Mr Mutsvangwa’s expulsion came after the Politburo upheld recommendations by Zanu-PF disciplinary Appeals and Review committee of the Central Committee chaired by Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko to fire the outspoken politician.
Parliament has since expelled former Chimanimani West MP Mr Munacho Mutezo from the Chamber after Zanu-PF wrote to Adv Mudenda that he was no longer a member of the revolutionary party. This was after it emerged that Mr Mutezo was unrepentant after he continued associating himself with Zimbabwe People First led by deposed former Vice President Ms Joice Mujuru.
Meanwhile, the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission gazetted the Mazowe North constituency by-election in which Zanu-PF candidate, Advocate Martin Dinha won.
“It is hereby notified, in terms of Section 68 of the Electoral Act (Chapter 2:13), that following the conclusion of the by-election held on the 23rd July, 2016, in the Mazowe North National Assembly constituency, Dinha Tafara Martin of Zanu-PF party was, with effect from the 24 of July, 2016, duly elected as a member of the National Assembly for Mazowe North constituency,” reads the notice by ZEC chief elections officer, Mrs Constance Chigwamba.
The Mazowe North constituency by-election was held following the death of Engineer Edgar Chidavaenzi (Zanu-PF) early this year. herald