Monday, 5 October 2020


ZIMBABWEAN President Emmerson Mnangagwa yesterday joined millions of people across the world in wishing United States President Donald Trump a speedy recovery after the Republican leader and his wife tested positive for COVID-19.

Trump revealed yesterday morning that he, together with his wife, Melania, had tested positive for coronavirus. The United States will hold elections next month where Trump is being challenged by Democrat Joe Biden.

“My best wishes to President Trump and the First Lady (Melania) as they make a full recovery from COVID-19,” Mnangagwa said in a brief statement.

Trump said he is on the recovery path together with his wife. The US goes into the polls amid a COVID-19 outbreak that has killed more than 200 000 people and infected over 7 million but experts say adequate measures have since been put in place to address the potential spread of the disease come election day, November 3.

Mark Rozell, dean of the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University last week told more than 200 journalists who are covering the US elections virtually that adequate measures had been put in place to minimise crowding at polling booths to curtail spread of the highly infectious disease.

Several questions have been asked on what happens if a President is too sick to work. Experts say if the president becomes unable to perform his role, the Constitution places the “powers and duties” of the office into the vice-president’s hands.

The 25th Amendment, ratified in the late 60s, makes this process clearer. In the present situation, here’s how it could play out. Suppose Trump learns he will need to undergo major hospital treatment for COVID-19 that would mean he could not work.

He must then pen a letter to Nancy Pelosi, the speaker of the United States House of Representatives and Charles Grassley who is president pro tempore of the United States Senate to inform both chambers of Congress that he’s unable to serve.

At this point, the vice-president becomes the acting president. Newsday




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