Chief Justice Luke Malaba said the formation of a political party is not an income generating project hence taxpayers’ money cannot be used to fund the establishment of new political parties.
Justice Malaba said this while delivering a judgement on an urgent chamber application by Zimbabwe Development Party led by Mr Kisinoti Mukwazhe and Voice of the People headed by Mr Moreprecision Muzadzi, seeking the deferment of the 2018 harmonised election to enable the amendment of the Political Parties (Finance) Act to allow them to get funding. Said Justice Malaba:
The formation of a political party is not an income generating project. The taxpayer’s money cannot be used to fund upstart political parties which may not be bona fide. Placement of a reasonable limitation upon the payment of public funds to political parties is beyond controversy. A situation where political parties are formed and registered to participate in a general election, simply to secure funding by the State, cannot have the effect of promoting multi-party democracy. The fact that some political parties end up not being funded does not mean that no political parties are funded. Entitlement to payment of the money from public funds appropriated for the purpose of funding political parties is not a fundamental right of a political party. A political party should have the support of the people and this is shown by votes received. There has to be a criterion for political parties’ financing.