Plot to block ED Mnangagwa from contesting 2023 presidential election

President Emmerson Mnangagwa

EXILED businessman Mutumwa Mawere has approached the Constitutional Court, seeking to block President Emmerson Mnangagwa from contesting in the August 23 polls.

The South African-based tycoon made a court application on 5 July arguing that allowing the Zanu PF leader to run for Presidency was as good as condoning violations of the Reconstruction of State Indebted Insolvent Companies Act, which have taken place during his tenure.

Mutumwa Mawere

Mawere used to preside over the Shabanie Mashava Mines (SMM) Holdings which was seized from him and his other related entities by the Zimbabwean government in 2004 through the controversial Reconstruction of State-Indebted Insolvent Companies Act, blamed by many for destroying several companies.

SMM, now in ruins, was once an asbestos conglomerate under Mawere, employing thousands of workers and sustaining the Midlands province.

Mnangagwa was reportedly behind the seizure of the company after a fallout with Mawere.

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It is alleged that Mnangagwa had assisted Mawere in acquiring the company but at a later stage he sided with Mnangagwa’s political rival, former Vice President Joyce Mujuru.

In the application, Mawere is cited as the applicant, SMM, THZ Holdings Limited, Africa Resources Limited, Tap Building Products Limited and Tichaona Mupasiri are cited as second to sixth applicants respectively, while Mnangagwa is cited as the respondent.

Mawere also made reference to government-run airline, Air Zimbabwe (AirZim) and Hwange Colliery Company Limited, as cases where violations of the law had taken place while the firms were under reconstruction.

In his application for an interim interdict and restraining order, Mawere said Mnangagwa must be “interdicted and restrained from participating in the 2023 elections.”

“Court to declare that Mnangagwa’s conduct in relation to the affairs of Air Zimbabwe Private Limited and Hwange Colliery Company through his direct and personal actions including appointing Chinamasa as chairman of Air Zimbabwe under reconstruction, which conduct was ultra vires the Reconstruction of State-indebted Insolvent Companies Act”.

Chinamasa is the former minister of finance, who presided over the Treasury between 2013 and 2017.

Mawere argued that the Act precluded the concurrent application of the provisions of the Companies Act in relation to the affairs of a company whose control and management was divested and deprived due to the Reconstruction Act.

— NewZimbabwe

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