President Emmerson Mnangagwa has extended Chief Justice Luke Malaba’s term of office by an additional five years after his medical report proved that he is still mentally and physically fit to continue in the esteemed judicial office.
Chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet Dr Misheck Sibanda has written to Chief Justice Malaba advising him that President Mnangagwa has accepted his election to continue in the office of Chief Justice beyond 70 years for an additional five years.
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Judicial Service Commission (JSC) secretary Mr Walter Chikwana confirmed the latest development to The Herald.
Chief Justice Malaba became head of the judiciary following his appointment as the country’s Chief Justice on March 27 2017, having been Acting Chief Justice since March 1 2016 following the retirement of the late Chief Justice Godfrey Chidyausiku.
Meanwhile, a number of people and institutions have approached the courts in a bid to challenge the extension of Malaba’s term of office saying the move was illegal as per the 2013 Constitution.
Malaba’s term of office is extended only days after president Mnangagwa signed into law the Constitutional Amendment Bill No. 2 which among other things gives the president authority to make key judicial appointments.
The Bill faced resistance from stakeholders who viewed it as a slap in the face of democracy since the masses had voted for the 2013 Constitution.
They viewed it as a way to ensure that Mnangagwa extends Malaba’s term of office beyond the 15th of this May when he was supposed to retire as he would have reached 70 years.
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