Constitutional Court rules expulsion from Parliament urgent

THE Constitutional Court has ruled that the case of fired MDC-T deputy president Dr Thokozani Khupe’s expulsion from Parliament should be heard on urgent basis next month.

Last week MDC-T recalled Dr Khupe from Parliament saying she was no longer serving the party’s interests.

Dr Khupe then filed an urgent chamber application at the Constitutional Court on Monday challenging her expulsion.

In an interview yesterday, her lawyer Professor Lovemore Madhuku said Deputy Chief Justice Elizabeth Gwaunza ruled that Dr Khupe’s case should be treated as an urgent matter and will be heard on May 30. “We today (yesterday) appeared before the Deputy Chief Justice to consider if the case can be heard on urgent basis or not. There was an agreement by all lawyers that the matter should be heard on an urgent basis,” said Prof Madhuku.

“The judges will also want to study the case hence the hearing has been set for May 30,” he said.

Prof Madhuku said the matter will determine the legality of recalling Dr Khupe from Parliament.

“This will determine whether the expulsion from Parliament was lawful. Between now and that date we have to agree on the timeline. When do they respond, when do we file the heads of arguments and so on,” he said.

Dr Khupe in her application challenging the expulsion has cited the Parliament of Zimbabwe, Speaker of Parliament Advocate Jacob Mudenda and MDC-T national deputy chairperson Mr Morgen Komichi as the first , second and third respondents respectively.

In the application, Dr Khupe says she approached the apex court as it has jurisdiction to determine whether Parliament or the President has failed to fulfil a constitutional obligation as expressly stipulated by section 167(2).

She argued that whenever Parliament’s attention has been drawn to a split or potential split in a political party, it has a constitutional obligation not to recognise a written notice from one of the groups without either taking the matter to court under an interpleader of sorts or referring the parties to a court for determination.

Dr Khupe wants to be reinstated as a Member of Parliament.

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