High Court interdict temporarily halts CCC Recalls, as internal strife persists
In a significant development, High Court judge Justice Tawanda Chitapi has issued an interim interdict, effectively halting self-imposed Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) interim secretary-general Sengezo Tshabangu from proceeding with the recall of opposition party legislators and councillors until the matter is resolved.
Tshabangu had previously initiated recalls shortly after the August 23 and 24 general elections, targeting 14 CCC Members of Parliament (MPs) and 17 councillors, alleging that they were no longer members of the opposition party. The CCC had challenged these recalls but was unable to prevent the announcement of by-election dates.
Justice Chitapi’s ruling, delivered yesterday, states that Tshabangu is prohibited from issuing any suspension letters to members of the National Assembly, Senate, or local authorities elected under the CCC’s ticket. Additionally, the Speaker of the National Assembly, Senate president, and Local Government minister are instructed not to effect any further recalls based on Tshabangu’s requests, pending the outcome of the urgent chamber application.
Ironically, this High Court interdict coincided with Tshabangu’s second attempt to recall an additional 18 legislators, including five senators. However, CCC lawyer Obey Shava revealed that the party had sued Tshabangu on October 20, seeking an interdict to prevent him from representing the party in any capacity, and that the legal action is still pending.
Shava further stated, “In the interim, the High Court has suspended any further recalls pending the disposition and hearing of that urgent chamber application. No more further recalls pending the determination of the application.”
Shava also noted that Speaker of Parliament Jacob Mudenda had expressed his intention to halt the latest recalls once he received the interdict order, which was still being prepared at the time.
Meanwhile, Tshabangu’s spokesperson, Khaliphani Phugeni, claimed to be unaware of the High Court interdict but assured that Tshabangu would respect the court’s proceedings.
“The interim secretary is alive to the fact that there is a matter before the High Court, and he is not going to act in a manner that undermines what the court is working on,” Phugeni told NewsDay.
In a separate development, Pumula Member of Parliament Albert Mhlanga revealed that he is Tshabangu’s deputy but claimed not to have been consulted about the recalls. Mhlanga expressed the need to discuss the issue internally, while Tshabangu denied having a deputy secretary-general.
These recent events take place amidst reports of clandestine collaboration between certain CCC leaders and Tshabangu, aimed at pressuring party leader Nelson Chamisa to call for an elective congress.
As the High Court interdict temporarily suspends further recalls, internal rifts and power struggles continue to plague the CCC. The court’s final determination and the resolution of the urgent chamber application will undoubtedly shape the future trajectory of the party and its leadership.