Zim ruling Zanu-PF party to hit Chamisa with '$3 million' legal bill

Zimbabwe’s ruling party says it plans to claim up to $3 million for legal costs incurred in the just-ended presidential petition, which the struggling MDC Alliance has been ordered to pay.

The nine-member Constitutional Court on Friday ruled that MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa failed to substantiate his claims of vote rigging, and dismissed the application “with costs”, according to AFP.

The court ruling paved the way for Emmerson Mnangagwa’s inauguration on Sunday.

'Humungous hours'

The ruling Zanu-PF secretary for legal affairs, Paul Mangwana, said the party’s lawyers had spent “a humungous amount of hours” preparing a defence against Chamisa’s claim.

“It is Chamisa who has to pay our lawyers. The law says if he doesn’t pay we will have to attach his personal property,” Mangwana told the state-run Sunday Mail.

He told the paper that “the ruling party’s lawyers were quantifying the exact amount due to them, but they had indicated an approximate bill of $3 million.”

The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC), which hired its own lawyers to defend itself in the petition, hasn’t said what it’s bill will be.

'Cynical ploy'

The MDC on Monday put out an appeal to supporters to help it pay the legal fees.

“Please give generously, to fight this cynical ploy to silence a critical voice defending human rights, democracy and change in Zimbabwe,” the party said on crowdfunding site, GoFundMe

“Let's stand together because the journey to change requires each and every one of us to play a part,” it added.

A separate MDC statement says it will file a petition to the Gambia-based African Commission on Human and People’s Rights challenging Mnangagwa’s election win.

“The petition will pray and ask for a declaration that the result of the presidential election was a legal nullity,” the statement said.

* To follow the latest on the Zimbabwe elections SIGN UP TO THE HELLO AFRICA NEWSLETTER

FOLLOW News24 Africa on Twitter and Facebook

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
Zama zama crackdown: What are your thoughts on West Village residents taking the law into their own hands?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Authorities should bring in the army already
10% - 948 votes
Illegal miners can't be scapegoated for all crime
53% - 5245 votes
What else did we expect without no proper policing
34% - 3331 votes
Vigilante groups are also part of the problem
3% - 322 votes
Rand - Dollar
Rand - Pound
Rand - Euro
Rand - Aus dollar
Rand - Yen
Brent Crude
Top 40
All Share
Resource 10
Industrial 25
Financial 15
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.