Court orders Mugabe to hold by-elections

2012-07-13 14:44

Harare - Zimbabwe's Supreme Court has ordered President Robert Mugabe to call by-elections by the end of August, a ruling that could alter the balance of power in parliament between his Zanu-PF party and its rivals.

The case was taken to court by three opposition MPs who lost their seats in 2009 when they were expelled from a splinter wing of Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai's Movement for Democratic Change (MDC).

The High Court ordered by-elections to be held but Mugabe appealed to the Supreme Court, arguing the government had no money to conduct the polls.

However, in a unanimous decision made public on Friday, the Supreme Court dismissed Mugabe's appeal and ordered "new elections to fill the vacancies as soon as possible, but no later than 30 August 2012".

It gave no reason for the decision and did not say whether elections should be held only for the three expelled or for another 30 seats vacant in the upper and lower houses of parliament because of the deaths of sitting members.

Tensions high

The MDC holds 96 seats in the 210-seat lower house of parliament, 10 short of a simple majority, against Zanu-PF's 91. The original three constituencies are all in Tsvangirai strongholds.

A parliamentary election is expected within 12 months.

Tensions are running high between Zanu-PF and the MDC, part of a power-sharing coalition government cobbled together after a 2008 vote marred by violence blamed on Zanu-PF.
The two parties are also quarrelling over a new constitution now in its third year of drafting.

Mugabe is one of Africa's longest-serving leaders and has been accused of hanging on to power through vote-rigging.

The 88-year-old has denied reports of ill-health and says he is fit enough to contest the next presidential election.

  • Erna - 2012-07-13 14:54

    When has Mugabe ever listened to anyone?

      Jellyarse - 2012-07-13 19:02

      Guys, be patient! 30 vacant seats in the House due to Aids related deaths is most likely - the rampant syphilis will take Mad Bob soon and then in another couple of years, the rest will have died from AIDS too - Why do you think Mad Bob is so anti-Gay?

  • Jobho - 2012-07-13 15:54

    The 2 words order and Mugabe are the other way around, the word order does not come before the word Mugabe but after. i.e Mugabe orders and not ...orders Mugabe. Mugabe doesnt take orders from anyone.

  • colleen.williams.1840 - 2012-07-13 15:58

    Mugabe never listens to anyone! No elections in Africa are ever free and fair. Mugabe and Zanu-PF will never give up the fight. They will use violence, intimidation, lying, manipulation and corruption to stay in power. Mugabe has too much too lose. His children get educated overseas, his food gets flown in from China.He flies to China for medical treatment, while the people in his country get no education, little children wait alongside the road for maize to fall of trucks passing through Zimbabwe, so they can have food. There is hardly any medical facilities in Zimbabwe.Many people cant afford to put food on the table. Mugabe and his cronies should be arrested for human rights offences, and yet he reigns like a king. Maybe when the blood shed hits this country again, some country somewhere will do something to help the MDC.

  • keith.murphy.9638 - 2012-07-13 16:12

    Long Live Adolf Hitler Mugabe !!! Mugabe will make those Judges mow his law and take care of his Donkeys soon.

      keith.murphy.9638 - 2012-07-14 10:07

      Soon we will hear the MDC leader has become Mugabes kitchen boy washing dishes and mopping the kitchen floor.Kwaaakkwaaak

  • Michael - 2012-07-13 18:18

    - and the judge was never seen again.......

      keith.murphy.9638 - 2012-07-14 10:09

      The judge is now taking care of the Donkeys

  • jookco - 2012-07-14 06:04

    Suicide blast in northern Nigeria kills five: police

  • jookco - 2012-07-14 06:04

    Suicide blast in northern Nigeria kills five: police

  • desmond.drake.1 - 2012-07-14 08:08

    Die PIG Die

  • keith.murphy.9638 - 2012-08-06 15:29

    Which Court ????? the tennis court ?????? kwaaak hahahaha my assh*le is throbbbing the Tenni Court ordered Mugabe to play a Tennis Game with that idiot Morgan hahahahahahaa.Morgan please take care of Mugabes DONKEYS you might inheret those DONKEYS soon

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