MUGABE FREELY RESIGNED. . . ‘Frivolous’ challenge to ED’s legitimacy thrown out

Chief Justice Luke Malaba

Chief Justice Luke Malaba

Daniel Nemukuyu, Harare Bureau
FORMER President of Zimbabwe Mr Robert Mugabe freely and voluntarily stepped down from power and the assumption of office by his deputy Emmerson Mnangagwa was done in terms of the law, Chief Justice Luke Malaba has ruled.

Dismissing an application by two fringe political outfits seeking nullification of the inauguration of President Mnangagwa in November last year, the judiciary boss said Mr Mugabe’s resignation was free and voluntary.

The Liberal Democrats and Revolutionary Freedom Fighters as well as activists Bongani Nyathi, Linda Masarira and Vusumuzi Sibanda sought the greenlight to contest the legality of the President Mnangagwa-led Government.

They argued that Mr Mugabe tendered the resignation under duress and that the assumption of office by President Mnangagwa was unconstitutional.

It was also argued in the court papers that the impeachment process that was instituted prior to the resignation of Mr Mugabe was unlawful and that it served to coerce him to step down.

However, Chief Justice Luke Malaba, sitting in his Chambers, threw out the request for direct access before rubbishing the intended constitutional challenge as frivolous and vexatious.

He said Mr Mugabe carefully applied his mind and decided to step down without the embarrassment of impeachment.

“The former President’s written notice of resignation speaks for itself. It sets the context in which it was written.

“He candidly reveals the fact that he had communicated with the Speaker of Parliament at 1353 hours. In the communication, the former President expressed to the Speaker his desire to resign from the office of President.

“The Speaker must have advised him that for the resignation to have the legal effect of bringing his presidency to an end, it had to be communicated to him by means of a written notice.

“A written notice of resignation addressed to the Speaker and signed by the President, on the face of it, meets the first requirement of constitutional validity,” said the Chief Justice.

He said the contents of the letter of resignation also confirm that the author freely appended his signature and acted in terms of the law.

“What the former President said in the written notice of resignation is the best evidence available of the state of his mind at the time.

“He said he was free to express his will to resign. Not only does the former President declare in the written notice that he made the decision voluntarily, he gives reasons for doing so in clear and unambiguous language.

“He said he was motivated by the desire to ensure a smooth, peaceful and non-violent transfer of power that underpins national security, peace and sustainability”.

There is no doubt, the Chief Justice said, that Mr Mugabe ensured that his resignation from office was in strict compliance with the letter and spirit of Section 96(1) of the Constitution.

Chief Justice Malaba said President Mnangagwa’s assumption of office was therefore done in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution after a vacancy occurred due to resignation.

“It is common cause that the assumption by the first respondent of the office of President was in accordance with the procedural and substantive requirements of paragraphs 14(4) (b) and 14(5) of the Sixth Schedule to the Constitution.

“A vacancy in the office of the President occurred as a result of the resignation by the former incumbent,” he said.

Zanu-PF being the party where the former president belonged, lawfully nominated President Mnangagwa to succeed Mr Mugabe.

‘The Speaker was notified in time and the inauguration was lawfully done within the prescribed timeframes.

“The first respondent took the oath of office within the requisite 48 hours after the Speaker was notified of his name.

“As a result of strict compliance with all the procedural and substantive requirements of a constitutionally valid assumption of the office of President left vacant by reason of resignation in terms of Section 96(1) of the Constitution, the first respondent assumed office as President,” ruled Chief Justice Malaba.

Chief Justice Malaba slapped the two minority political parties and the three activists with an order for costs.

He ruled that their application lacked merit and was tantamount to an abuse of court process.

Chief Justice Malaba blasted the applicants for maliciously tarnishing the Constitutional Court registry and the State security agents in the matter.

“The litigation amounted to abuse of court process. The applicants made malicious allegations of improper conduct against the officials in the registry of the Constitutional Court, accusing them of colluding with State security agents to make documents relating to their case disappear.

“They knew that the allegations were false. They conducted themselves in this manner to attract publicity for political reasons.

“Although the applicants are unsuccessful private parties in a constitutional case, their conduct justifies an award of costs against them,” ruled the Chief Justice.

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  • Vusa

    Let them pay for trying to maintain their looting spree. Are these people really from Zimbabwe where millions of people are suffering while the elite few live large? I fail to understand that some individuals were happy with Mugabe’s rule. Perhaps they are among those who took advantage of Mugabe’s old age and saw that as an opportunity to loot without any punishment.

    • MakhosiXamu

      Maybe you Hero worship ED’s looting or maybe you blind. This ED & bChiwenga own everything from farms, gold, diamonds and all Fuel service stsations- ndoda you are a messy, mgodoyi.

      • zibulo

        prove it , name the businesses , where they are, who runs them..Khukuma sizwe, ungakhohlwa lakaMgabe ama business

        • MakhosiXamu

          All oil companies in Zimbabwe are controlled by ED & chiwenga’s children and relatives. Major Diamond companies and Gold mines in Manicaland & Midlands belong to ED nxa amehlo akho lenhloko yakho kungaphilanga kalhe go to Ingutsheni, mgodoyi

          • takunda nigel

            Unsubstantiated cheap regime change propaganda . But even if that were true , would it not be more preferrable to have those who have their own money than someone who is so poor he will grab everthing in his reach ?Most tellingly , there is no constitutional constraint on leadership owning businesses .You just kind of letting out hot air -through the mouth .

    • takunda nigel

      Quite right .There are also those who welcomed the retirement of Mugabe in as much as it made room for them to step near the trough But they were surprised to hear talk of anti corruption .That was talk against why they got in in the first instance .The logical thing for them now is to try to smear and denigrate the New Dispensation Initiators .All in order to keep the corruption window open .The mood of the PIPO is such that nothing will succeed in robbing them of the new values of peace , hope , and opportunity . Our New Tomorrow is Assured .

  • Nkunzemnyama

    ….and the chief justice was sober and had not smoked mbanje ?

    • uyanya wena

      whats with mbanje

    • takunda nigel

      Rest the colonial shibboleth !

  • Wikinerri

    Let the old man rest

  • MakhosiXamu

    if our judges are as crazy as this one then Zimbabwe is dead. Malaba and crew are mere stooges of this Junta Govt, what else can we expect. I thought judges were sane but alas the opposite is true, shame.

    • lavine chikundi

      Potato poteito it all sounds like potato

    • zibulo

      in executing their COUP,they covered tracks of criminality by ensuring that Mgabe himself said the words I QUIT !!!! He tapped out after being pinned by the Tanks at his and his cronies’ houses, where some bodyguards died , and their deaths have never been given the attention they deserved for those deceased on duty. What does baba u Mlaba call a RESIGNATION at gunpoint? its called a military Coup , obviously resigned under DURESS. But who cares, when two devils fight, its normally good for the victims.And why is this case being TRIVIALIZED, its not a small thing for President’s Legitimacy to be challenged, it should have made news headlines, but since ZBC/Zimpapers as i say are ZANU tools………Smith did the same, Mgabe did it, ED does it

      • MakhosiXamu

        The issue is not about RG….the issue is about encouraging a wrong culture in Zimbabwe. If a new Govt comes into being you will see a vicious cycle that cause panic to Zimbabweans. ED is bring a new culture that uses soldiers.

      • takunda nigel

        Huroi-spirited people ! You feign sympathy for some misguided pple who thought they could stop tanks by merely repeating Mugabe slogans .Pipo who thought a ballpoint could. stop a military vehicle .What about those injured , killed and maimed in MDC campaigns to remove Mugabe ? Why get pipo killed today only to jump in bed with your rival tomorrow ? What do you take us for ? Cheap political pawns ?Some of you do not deserve the New Dispensation Goodies so generously thrown your way .Mucharira chete !

    • takunda nigel

      MX , so you in all honesty think you can manipulate ZPF , the Service Forces , Judges and the populace to create a window through which you can smuggle puppet poodle Chamisa into State House to the detriment of our gains in the Liberation Struggle , hee ? Tichakunzwai marira kirisimusi isati yasvika !

      • MakhosiXamu

        The ZNA or Judges are the country and must be personal properties of individuals or Zn PF. Those who fought in the struggle never fought on empty tummies or naked so your assumptions are worthless. These war vets impreginanted our sisters and aunts and ate all our food, matemadanda and Ed’s advisers are worst persons ever to grace this land, shame.

        • takunda nigel

          Why do you hate yourself so much ?

  • mazicobomoco7

    It was high time for him to rest ,and pave way for michina yamajuzi vana ED Munanngagwa see where we are now ; the new dispensation has come with a bang both in politics, social ,economic and development–big up ED take your vote

    • zibulo

      See where we are ??? where are you and me now? still at the same situation/station, currency-less, jobless, same old ZANU thieves and looters now wearing different or turned -in jackets , no cash recovered its still in their homes and non at banks , same old ZBC and zimpapers favoring ZANU and you lot claiming thats freedom, lies , propaganda , disrespect of political opponents , no public debates on social political and economic matters about why we are where we are and who are the Individuals concerned , this should be on radio, why are we , me and you , not participating in helping Zimbabwe. We are still at the same bus stop as when Mgabe was looting, new looters now

  • Doctor Do little

    Did Mugabe jump or was he pushed? We all know he was pushed. That does not make me sad but rather happy he is gone and rathe happy that a window of opportunity has opened to get rid of those that assisted him all those years including one that saluted him plenty something times.

    • MakhosiXamu

      You will never be able to remove this junta, mgodoyi.

    • takunda nigel

      Opportunist arselicker ! Mugabe was not pushed but assisted (oldman) .You think ZPF is there to do your bidding ,hee? Look just behind tomorrow .

  • lavine chikundi

    We needed him gone nd the impeachment was a push in the ryt direction

    • MakhosiXamu

      You are a Zanu juntalised idiot , shame.

  • Mumanyikawakaroka

    The Judge was quite generous to determine the legitimacy of R.GM.’s resignation.This case should just have been thrown out for lack of privity by the applicants. Who are these Liberal Democrats, Revolutionary Freedom Fighters, Bongani Nyathi, Linda Masarira and Vusumuzi Sibanda to be making an application on behalf of Mugabe? The Court should not waste time on gatecrashers, piping Toms and nose pokers who rush to court with cases that don’t concern them.

    • MakhosiXamu

      This Zanu idiot who practises witchcraft sees nothing wrong in ED/chiwenga’s killings , shame on you

      • takunda nigel

        Why think so lowly ,MX ?

      • Mumanyikawakaroka

        We are talking Law not Religion Xamu. At Law you don’t seek demages for every wrong done to somebody unless you are “near enough” to show that the wrong done to the 3rd party caused some harm, financial or otherwise, to you as well. Now tell me Xamu, what harm did you, or any of those applicants, suffer from the resignation of Robert Mugabe? You must be one of those lazy lizards that spends the day rakazambira mushana when others are working, believing that uyinkosi yaboXamu and are entitled to State-sponsored robbery as you were doing under Robert Mugabe. Shame on you Xamu.

  • Takesure Zvazviri

    Vana Linda Masarira dzungu rakawandisa, zvaanenge akamarchawo paoperation restore legacy. Mugabe had failed the nation and he had only two options to resign or to face impeachment and he chose to resign.