WASHINGTON DC —
High Court judge president Justice George Chiweshe today reserved to tomorrow the ruling in the matter in which President Robert Mugabe is seeking to be excused from complying with a court order that compels him to proclaim dates for three Matabeleland by-elections by end of March.
The judge president reserved his ruling after hearing submissions from President Mugabe’s lawyer, Advocate Prince Machaya, the Deputy Attorney General, and Advocate Thabani Mpofu and Tawanda Zhuwarara, the attorneys representing three legislators, Abednico Bhebhe, Njabuliso Mguni and Norman Mpofu, who want their vacant constituencies filled through by-elections.
All three are former lawmakers from the mdc formation led by Industry Minister Welshman Ncube.
Last month, President Mugabe filed an urgent chamber application in the High Court seeking to be excused from complying with a court order that forces him to proclaim dates for by-elections in the three constituencies by end of March.
The March 31 deadline was set by Justice Chiweshe in October last year at the request of President Mugabe, who had said he would call for general elections by end of March.
But he now wants more time to proclaim the dates for harmonized elections on or before June 29 this year.
But the three legislators want Mr. Mugabe to comply with the court order by gazetting dates for the by-elections in their constituencies which have been deprived of parliamentary representation.