Independent candidate in the Norton Constituency by-election Temba Mliswa yesterday got relief from the High Court against a police ban stopping him from holding rallies ahead of the October 22 plebiscite.
Mliswa approached the court after police refused to accept his notices of intention to hold rallies in all wards in the constituency that became vacant after war veterans leader Chris Mutsvangwa was expelled from Zanu PF recently.
High Court judge Justice Owen Tagu yesterday granted an interim relief that bars police from interfering with Mliswa’s rallies.
Mliswa’s lawyer Marufu Mandevere confirmed the order that was granted in chambers.
“Justice Tagu granted an order that allows the applicant [Mliswa] to campaign freely and hold rallies in the constituency. The order allows Mliswa to go ahead and hold a rally at Mutipitipi Primary School, Ward 14 of Norton today [yesterday] starting from 8am to 5:30pm,” Mandevere said.
“The police were interdicted from stopping the gathering without a valid court order and were ordered that they should deploy sufficient officers to provide security at the rally.”
Mliswa has had stormy relations with the police and the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission that came to a head last Thursday at a stakeholders meeting.
Mliswa accused ZEC of deliberately not responding to his letters of complaint against the police and Zanu PF during the on-going electioneering period.
ZEC chairperson, Justice Rita Makarau said Mliswa was a prolific writer and they would respond to his letter in due course.
Mliswa is contesting against Zanu PF’s Tinashe Chindeza and David Choga from the National Constitutional Assembly (NCA).
The outspoken Mliswa is a former Zanu PF Mashonaland West provincial chairperson and Hurungwe West MP. He was expelled from Zanu PF in 2015 on allegations of working with former vice-president Joice Mujuru in alleged attempts at toppling President Robert Mugabe unconstitutionally.
Mliswa contested and narrowly lost the Hurungwe West seat against Zanu PF’s Keith Guzah amidst complaints that his supporters were being tortured and chased away from the constituency