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Zimbabwe's Elections 2013 - Index of Articles
A response to the Supreme Court ruling
May 31, 2013
The Prime Minister
of Zimbabwe has great respect for the courts. However, today’s
by the Supreme Court setting
an election date is evidence that the court has overstepped
Court has no power whatsoever to set an election date. In the true
spirit of separation of powers, an election date remains a political
process in which the executive has a role to play.
There is clear
evidence that there are some within the executive who wish to circumvent
the consultative role in the GPA
and the share responsibility enshrined therein to pronounce an election
date under the cloak of judicial authority.
date is the responsibility of the executive, which has not shown
that it has failed to announce such a date. SADC and the people
of Zimbabwe know that an election date is a result of political
pronouncements in which the judiciary has no role to play. The Principals
have a consultative mechanism that would ensure that a date is proclaimed
following an agreement by all parties. This is what SADC, the AU
and the people of Zimbabwe expect, not a date set up under the cover
of the judiciary without a mechanism to ensure to that issues of
the election environment and reforms are addressed.
expect implementation of reforms and an intensive voter registration
exercise that would not have anyone unnecessarily disenfranchised.
The only positive
news from the ruling is that it has quashed the circus of an election
date by June 29. This ruling only vindicates some of us that June
29 was a legal and political non-starter. It, however, still remains
difficult to appreciate the practicality of an election by July
31. The Constitution is clear that the term of Parliament
expires on June 29 but section 63 (4) is clear that the executive
can continue for a maximum of 4 months, which means an election
has to be held by 30 October 2013.
One arm of government,
in this case the Judiciary, cannot make a decision which should
ordinarily lie in the other arm of the State: i.e the executive.
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