President Emmerson Mnangagwa has formally designated Vice President Constantino Chiwenga to oversee the running of the Defence and War Veterans Affairs ministry.
The formal appointment was made under Statutory Instrument 97 of 2018, published in the Government Gazette last week.
Chiwenga was appointed to oversee the Defence and War Veterans Affairs ministry through a press statement last December but had not been legally assigned the duties.
According to the Government Gazette, Mnangagwa has, in terms of Section 104 (1) of the Constitution as read with Section 37 (2) of the Interpretation Act (Chapter 1:01), assigned to the minister of Defence and War Veterans Affairs – (a) the administration of the Acts set out in the Schedule and (b) the functions conferred or imposed on the minister of Defence and War Veterans Affairs save to the extent that those functions have not been assigned to some other minister.
“Assignment of functions (minister of Defence) Notice, 2014, published in Statutory Instrument 41 of 2014, assignment of functions (minister of Welfare Service for War Veterans, War Collaborators, Former Political Detainees and Restrictees) Notice, 2015, published in Statutory Instrument 75 of 2015, are hereby repealed,” the Government Gazette said.
“In terms of Section 99 of the Constitution, the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe may assign functions to Vice Presidents to assist him/her in the discharge of his/her functions and perform any other functions, including the administration of any Ministry or Department or Act of Parliament.
“Accordingly, His Excellency the president, (Cde) E.D. Mnangagwa, has duly assigned honourable vice president (Rtd.) general (Dr) Constantino Guveya Dominic Nyikadzino Chiwenga to administer the ministry of Defence and War Veterans Affairs,” the press statement reads.
According to law expert Lovemore Madhuku, the announcement of the appointment in the Government Gazette was mere formalisation of his duties as the person responsible for the Defence ministry.
“They should have done that as soon as he was appointed. The announcement in the Government Gazette is just a process of formalising what ought to have been formalised a long time ago,” Madhuku said.