President Emmerson Mnangagwa and the ruling ZANU PF have been served with court papers in a case where Sybeth Msengezi is challenging the constitutionality of Mnangagwa’s ascendancy to power in 2017.
Musengezi filed papers at the High Court in October seeking an order declaring as illegal the November 19, 2017 ZANU PF central committee meeting that removed the late Robert Mugabe as party leader.
After the meeting, Mugabe was forced to resign as the party leader and President and was replaced by Mnangagwa.
In his court challenge, Musengezi argues that Mnangagwa’s ascendancy to power violated the ZANU PF constitution, hence it was illegitimate.
Musengezi cited ZANU PF, Mnangagwa, secretary for administration Obert Mpofu, acting political commissar Patrick Chinamasa, former Vice-President Phelekezela Mphoko and ex-finance secretary Ignatius Chombo as first to fifth respondents, respectively. Reads in part a signed note from the court sheriff after the delivery of the papers to Mnangagwa on Monday:
Copy of court application for a declarator in terms of section 14 of the High Court Act for the second respondent served on the responsible person Mr Ziyambi Ziyambi (Justice minister) at 0955 hours.
Musengezi, who is represented by his lawyer Nqobani Sithole, argued that Mugabe was not incapacitated to preside over a lawfully convened session of the central committee in terms of Article 7 section 38 of the party’s constitution.
The court challenge is seen as part of a wider power struggle between Mnangagwa and a faction loyal to his deputy, Constantino Chiwenga.