Thursday 27 July 2023


Independent Presidential aspirant Saviour Kasukuwere will know his fate today when the Supreme Court is expected to rule on his appeal challenging a High Court decision that effectively disqualifies him from contesting the August 23 election as he is no longer a voter.

A three-judge panel headed by Justice Antonia Guvava with Justice Chinembiri Bhunu and Justice Felistas Chatukuta will hand down their decision today.

 The court heard submissions from both parties’ legal counsel and reserved judgment to today.

 Professor Welshman Ncube along with Advocate Method Ndlovu and Adv Reginald Mutero argued the matter for Mr Kasukuwere while Harare lawyer Mr Lovedale Mangwana who brought the original suit, and the application for the appeal heard as a matter of urgency, was being represented by Adv Lewis Uriri and Adv Edley Mubaiwa.

The decision by the High Court recently that Mr Kasukuwere was no longer a voter, and therefore, could not contest any election, was stayed the moment he filed his appeal with the Supreme Court.

ZEC is also involved, but only supporting the application for an urgent appeal, as the final ballot paper needs to be printed soon and ZEC wants to know whether to include or exclude Mr Kasukuwere.

 ZEC is not involved in the actual case, but is interested in knowing whether to include Mr Kasukuwere on the ballot or not.

With the appeal date set ZEC is no longer involved.

In his urgent application, Mr Mangwana is seeking the court to exercise its inherent jurisdiction to regulate and control the proceedings in the appeal and order its urgent set down, hearing and determination, citing the general public and national importance of the matter and the fact that the election is now less than two months away.

 Mr Mangwana recently won the first round of the legal battle to thwart Mr Kasukuwere from entering the race for the highest office on the land after the High Court found his nomination was invalid as he had been absent from Zimbabwe for more than 18months without being in one of the categories where this does not lead to being deleted from the voters roll.

Suspecting that Mr Kasukuwere was unlikely to prosecute his appeal urgently, so in the normal course of events it was likely to be heard only after the election, Mr Mangwana took it upon himself to make sure the appeal was brought forward to be decided ahead of the election, which a month away.

The law disqualifies a voter who has been absent for more than 18 months and Mr Kasukuwere had failed to prove he had not been absent from Zimbabwe for at least 18 months although the judge said a certified copy of Mr Kasukuwere’s passport would have shown any entries into Zimbabwe that would have restarted the clock.

The judge also dismissed Mr Kasukuwere’s statement that he was in South Africa for medical treatment, as there was zero supporting evidence, such as a medical report. Herald


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