The High Court in Harare is set to deliver a ruling tomorrow in a case where parents are challenging the directive given by the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education Professor Mavima that ordinary level students should rewrite English Paper 2.
The case which cites Mavima and the Zimbabwe School Examinations Council (ZIMSEC) as respondents was heard today by the High Court after being deferred because the respondents had not yet signed their affidavit. The Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) is representing two parents Victor Mukomeka and Chingasiyeni who filed an urgent chamber application at the High Court challenging the decision by Primary and Secondary Education Minister Professor Paul Mavima to nullify the results of last November’s O Level English Paper 2 exam and ordering a rewrite for all candidates.
The parents argue that Mavima breached constitutional provisions by annulling the results when only Zimsec could do so. They want the resit conducted variably or to be cancelled altogether.
The parents also argue that the 8 day period set aside for students to prepare for the re-sit “is inadequate and unduly constraining”. Part of the application reads:
(The examination) be declared null and void as the minister acted beyond his authority of which the Act empowers, in Section 34, only the examinations board to annul examination results.
The minister confirms that the cheating was identified during the examination session. It is not clear why the English Paper 2 examination was allowed to continue, and why Zimsec proceeded to mark the exams, only to annul results on the 8th of February 2018, some months later.
It is not clear why remedial action was not taken timeously and instantly upon realising the cheating or even the potential for cheating. Essentially, Zimsec allowed an exam in which they detected cheating to proceed and proceeded to mark it, only to annul results afterwards.
The costs attached to this kind of action and the rationality and reasonableness of this decision alone does not withstand scrutiny.
Paul Mavima is a Zimbabwean politician , academic and certified financial planner.He is currently the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education and the Member of Parliament for Gokwe Sengwa Constituency. Read More About Paul Mavima
The Zimbabwe School Examinations Council (ZIMSEC) is an autonomous parastatal under the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education. ZIMSEC was setup as a result of the 1994, Zimbabwe School Examinations Council Act. Amoung other reasons, the examinations were localised to ensure the end of colonial... Read More About Zimbabwe School Examinations Council
The High Court of Zimbabwe is one of the Superior Courts of Zimbabwe. The High Court deals at first instance with all high value and high importance cases. It also has a supervisory jurisdiction over all subordinate courts and tribunals. Appeals from the High Court... Read More About High Court