Two opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC-T) members have applied to the High seeking the reversal of the recent appointments of Nelson Chamisa and Elias Mudzuri as additional vice presidents of the party
The applicants are arguing that the elevation of the two by party president, Morgan Tsvangirai, violates the party constitution.
Tsvangirai announced last Friday that Chamisa and Mudzuri would be joining Thokozani Khupe, the other deputy, in the MDC-T presidium.
The applicants are George Rice, a provincial executive member, and Patson Murimoga, a musician who has in the past composed praise songs for Tsvangirai.
They cite Tsvangirai, Chamisa and Mudzuri as the first, second and third respondents, respectively.
Lovemore Moyo, the MDC-T national chair, and MDC-T are the fourth and fifth respondents.
In his founding affidavit, Murimoga said the appointments affected him as a party member.
I have been a loyal member of the fifth respondent from its formation and I am a musician who has been a praise singer of the first and fifth respondents and I even sang the jingle that first respondent used to campaign in the 2013 Presidential elections.
“I also have interest in making sure that the fifth respondent’s constitution, which binds me, is respected by all members of the fifth respondent including the first respondent.
“In this case I am particularly affected by the appointment of second and third respondents as deputy presidents of the fifth without following the constitution of the fifth respondent,” Murimoga.
He argued that, according to the constitution’s Article 188.8.131.52, the “deputy president shall be elected directly by congress from nominations made by the provinces”.
Tsvangirai insists he was given the powers by the national council which has the mandate to run party affairs in between congresses.
However, Murimoga argued that, as a provincial member, he was supposed to participate in the nomination of a vice president..
“The national council cannot appoint deputy president who should be voted for from nominations from the provinces that make up the fifth respondent,” said Murimoga, adding that the constitution did not empower the national council or Tsvangirai to appoint a deputy president.
“For first respondent to violate the constitution…he should be protecting smacks of double standards in that he preached and teaches what he does not practice,” he added.
Murimoga argued that the agenda of the national council meeting prior to the appointments did not contain any item relating to new deputies. Rice supported Murimoga’s application and the two want the appointments to be declared null and void