Chief Justice nullifies MDC-T's withdrawal of election challenge

Lawyers representing MDC-T leader Mr Morgan Tsvangirai today disassociated themselves from the politician’s statements impugning the integrity of the court that were part of the election petition as the court nullified the politician’s purported withdrawal of the poll challenge.

Chief Justice Godfrey Chidyausiku, sitting with eight other judges of the Constitutional Court, proceeded to hear the arguments from the lawyers and reserved judgment on the petition to tomorrow.

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The withdrawal was nullified because it did not comply with the law.

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It was the court’s finding that whenever a presidential election petition is filed, the matter has to be heard and determined before the swearing in of the winning candidate.

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The withdrawal, according to the court, was not provided for in the laws of Zimbabwe and the matter should be heard and determined.

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Asked to comment on the averments made in the affidavit of Mr Tsvangirai and other papers filed in which he allegedly impugned the integrity of the court, Advocate Deepak Mehta disassociated himself from the statements.

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The instructing lawyer Mr Chris Mhike of Artherstone and Cook also confirmed through Adv Mehta that he was no part of the “attack on the judiciary”.

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In disassociating themselves from the case, the lawyer struggled to express his views until the Chief Justice came to his rescue.

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“In other words you are saying these are beliefs of your client and you disassociate yourself and your colleagues from the statements made in the affidavit?”

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The lawyers confirmed the position to the court, leaving Mr Tsvangirai to have a taste of his own medicine.