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Zimbabwe Political Parties Field Candidates for By-Elections in 6 Constituencies Despite Supreme Court Ruling to Reinstate Lawmakers

Several political parties filed names of candidates today at the Nomination Court countrywide, who will contest by-elections in six parliamentary constituencies which were declared vacant despite a Supreme Court ruling that the person that recalled lawmakers of the People’s Democratic Party from the House of Assembly was not a legitimate representative of the organization.

The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) announced sometime this week that they had abandoned holding by-elections in Pumula, Nkulumane, Harare East, Kambuzuma, Mutasa South and Mbizo following the Supreme Court ruling.

But President Emmerson Mnangagwa proclaimed in a government gazette that the Nomination Court should sit and select candidates for the seats as per a High Court ruling on Wednesday.

Nelson Chamisa’s Citizens Coalition for Change fielded some of the candidates who were recalled by the MDC-T, which accused them of aligning themselves with the MDC Alliance.

The recalled PDP lawmakers contested the 2018 parliamentary polls under the MDC Alliance.

Justice Never Katiyo ordered ZEC to open the Nomination Court for filing the six vacant seats, a day after ZEC announced that there won’t be elections in these constituencies in compliance with a court ruling early this year ordering parliament to reinstate the six Members of Parliament.

Benjamin Rukanda, who claimed to be secretary for the PDP, filed an urgent chamber application on Wednesday challenging the cancellation of the nominations in the six constituencies.

Several and council and parliamentary seats also fell vacant when the MDC-T recalled all councillors and lawmakers, who were linked to Chamisa's MDC Alliance.