Chief Justice Luke Malaba said no one, even the courts can stop President Emmerson Mnangagwa from proclaiming election dates.
Chief Justice Malaba said this while dismissing an application by Zimbabwe Development Party (ZDP), led by Mr Kisinoti Mukwazhe, and Voice of the People (VOP) to bar President Mnangagwa from proclaiming the 2018 election date. The two parties sought to stop Mnangagwa from proclaiming the election date until they get funding to campaign.
Chief Justice Malaba said proclamation of the election date in terms of Section 144 (1) as read with Section 158 (1) (a) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, was mandatory and it could not be stopped for whatever reason. Said Chief Justice Malaba:
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No one, including the courts, has power to alter what is mandated by the Constitution in clear, unambiguous and mandatory terms. It would be unconstitutional for a court or judge to order the President not to call and set dates for the holding of the harmonised general elections as prayed for by the applicants. The mandatory obligation is imposed on the President by the Constitution for the benefit of all the people of Zimbabwe.