Monday, 31 August 2020

WE HAVE WITHDRAWN 22 DIPLOMATIC PASSPORTS : PARLY


Parliament has withdrawn diplomatic passports for all Members of Parliament who were recalled by their political parties.

Clerk of Parliament Mr Kennedy Chokuda wrote to affected legislators yesterday directing them to surrender their diplomatic passports and revert to ordinary travel documents.

The Registrar-General holds the ordinary passport when a diplomatic passport is issued.It can return the ordinary one when the diplomatic one is surrendered.

In his letter, Mr Chokuda said the diplomatic passport facility had been extended to legislators by President Mnangagwa in September 2019. 

“You may recall conditions for use of the document were linked to the tenure of the current Parliament inclusive of you being a serving Member of Parliament of Zimbabwe,” reads the letter.

One of the affected former legislator, Mr Charlton Hwende from the MDC Alliance, confirmed receiving the letter withdrawing his diplomatic passport.

“It is not victimisation. The issue is the purpose for which it was issued has fallen away, they are no longer MPs,” said Mr Chokuda.

He said every MP was eligible to take up a diplomatic passport although the facility was earmarked for certain categories of legislators when it was initially introduced.

“What we are saying is the circumstances under which the diplomatic passport was issued have changed. Furthermore, we are saying they are surrendering the diplomatic passport in exchange for the ordinary passport, so there is no prejudice they will suffer,” he said.

The MDC-T recalled at least 21 MPs while Zanu PF recalled one legislator, Mr Killer Zivhu, after he ceased representing the party in Parliament.

Of the 21 recalled legislators, nine are Senators while 12 are National Assembly representatives. Herald

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