The opposition party, Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC), is seeking intervention from regional and international parliamentary bodies to halt the upcoming by-elections scheduled for December 9.
These by-elections aim to fill vacant positions following the recall of 15 MPs and 17 councillors affiliated with CCC, initiated by self-proclaimed interim secretary-general Sengezo Tshabangu. However, CCC leader Chamisa argues that the recalls are irregular as Tshabangu is not a member of the party.
Chamisa asserts that the by-elections are unjustifiable due to the unconstitutional and fraudulent nature of the recalls. He has raised the issue with the Southern African Development Community (Sadc) and intends to pursue political and diplomatic avenues to prevent the by-elections, emphasizing their inconsistency with democratic norms.
Tshabangu, dismissed as a Zanu PF impostor, denies these allegations, while Chamisa accuses President Mnangagwa of attempting to secure a two-thirds majority for his party in Parliament. CCC has filed an appeal in the High Court challenging the recall of its members, with the hearing scheduled for November 2.
Chamisa refuses to accept the results of the August 23 and 24 harmonized elections, claiming they were rigged in favour of Mnangagwa. Election observer missions, including Sadc, raised concerns about the credibility of the polls. Although Chamisa had hoped Sadc would call for a re-run, the regional body suggested pursuing internal remedies such as approaching the courts.
In the midst of these developments, CCC is reevaluating its decision to withdraw from Parliament as a protest against the recalls after the expiration of its 14-day ultimatum. They will continue to monitor progress, review action plans, and consult with stakeholders. However, Tshabangu warns that he will recall any CCC member who withdraws from Parliament or local government without his authorization.
Adding complexity to the situation, Tshabangu has written to the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission, informing them that he, along with Mbuso Siso and Jabulani Ncube, are the only authorized CCC officials to counter-sign nomination papers for the party’s candidates in the upcoming by-elections on December 9.