Source: Professor Madhuku inform delimitation report downfall could activate constitutional crisis – News Report
Constitutional law professor Lovemore Madhuku has warned the country’s fragile poll processes could plunge into a constitutional crisis if President Emmerson Mnangagwa continues treating a copy of the delimitation report submitted to him last week as a revised document.
ZEC chairperson, Justice Priscilla Chigumba told the media at state house soon after meeting Mnangagwa that she had submitted a perfect report to the President.
This was the second time the ZEC boss has submitted a copy of the report to Mnangagwa after the draft document handed to the President December 26 last year elicited strong opposition from some Zanu-PF hawks who felt it was tilted in favour of the opponent.
The report submitted by Chigumba last Friday was followed by another episode of confusion with government spokesperson Nick Mangwana and presidential spokesperson George Charamba issuing statements contradicting Chigumba.
Speaking on Twitter Space hosted by source, Madhuku said there was no constitutional provision that obliged ZEC to submit a revised draft report.
“There is a problem relating to what it is that ZEC can give to the president,” he said.
“It must give to the president a final report. The constitution does not have provisions for anything else after ZEC has received comments to its preliminary report.
“Its next interaction with the president is final, that is what the constitution contemplates.
“As we stand now, there are now two versions; the electoral Commission chairperson says she gave the president a final report which would mean that the president must now go to the next stage within 14 days of gazetting that.
“But the president’s office says that they have not yet received the final report.
“They have received what they are calling a revised preliminary delimitation report.
“I must make it clear that there is no provision for what is called a revised preliminary report.”
Madhuku said if Mnangagwa remained under the belief he was holding a revised copy of the report, he was most likely to skip the crucial process of gazetting the document within the timeframes prescribed by the constitution.
“If the president doesn’t do what is required of him in terms of section 161 subsection (11) then of course there would be a breach of the constitution by the president.
“On the other hand, if ZEC believes it has submitted a final report, ZEC will have no basis of submitting anything else.
“So, there, I can easily say that it can create a constitutional crisis if that difference in characterisation continues,” he said.
Madhuku warned the President risked inviting a legal challenge should he act contrary to what the law prescribes.
Source – zimlive