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NCA Takes Zimbabwe Referendum Case to Supreme Court

Supreme Court
Supreme Court
The National Constitutional Assembly (NCA) has filed an appeal in the Supreme Court following a ruling Thursday by a High Court judge indicating that the courts have no power to change a date set by President Robert Mugabe for the forthcoming constitutional referendum.

NCA attorney Alec Muchadehama told VOA that he has filed the appeal challenging judge president George Chiweshe’s ruling.

Muchadehama said he will also file an urgent application requesting the Supreme Court to hear the matter urgently as the March 16 referendum approaches.

The constitution lobby group says the parliamentary select committee-led draft was not people-driven and is urging Zimbabweans to reject it, arguing that the draft charter gives a lot of executive powers to the President and other arms of the state.

The president announced mid-February that the referendum will be held March 16, allowing voters only five weeks to review the 160-page draft document.

The NCA argues that the referendum date won’t give the people enough time to read and understand the charter.

The organization dismissed the ruling by judge president Chiweshe saying it implied that no court in Zimbabwe can question the President over anything that he does or declares.

The constitutional body wants the courts to force Mr. Mugabe to change the date of the constitutional vote.