Catastrophic blow to opposition as Speaker of Parliament upholds the expulsion of 18 CCC lawmakers


  • The controversial decision comes amidst accusations of sinister machinations to dismantle the opposition's representation in parliament and hand a two-thirds majority to the ruling party. 

HARARE – Despite a High Court interdict ordering Sengezo Tshabangu to cease his frenetic onslaught of recalls within the opposition, National Assembly speaker Jacob Mudenda upheld the expulsion of 18 Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) legislators on Wednesday, dealing a severe blow to the largest opposition party in Zimbabwe. 

Speaker of Parliament Mudenda upholds expulsion of 18 CCC legislators
CCC lawmakers attempt to sway the Speaker's mind in their favour when he made the announcement of more recalls in the National Assembly on Tuesday. [Image: Open Parly]

The lawmakers were permanently ejected from the august house on Tuesday in a move that has left the opposition in disarray and elicited serious questions about the speaker's adherence to the tenets of impartiality and the rule of law.

The expulsion came mere moments after news broke that Justice Tawanda Chitapi of the Harare High Court had granted an interdict, temporarily halting any further recalls initiated by the self-styled party interim secretary general, Sengezo Tshabangu

The opposition wasted no time in accusing the speaker of contempt of court, contending that his announcement of the legislators' removal was a blatant disregard of the judicial process.

Nevertheless, Mudenda, undeterred by the allegations leveled against him, addressed the anguished opposition lawmakers on Tuesday, promising to examine the court ruling before making any definitive pronouncements. 

Yet, to the dismay of many, he returned the following day to staunchly defend his contentious decision.

The speaker, an eminent figure within the ruling Zanu PF party, has been the subject of intense scrutiny, with critics casting aspersions on his levels of impartiality: they claim that Mudenda, at the behest of his party, is spearheading a covert campaign to obliterate the opposition's representation in parliament.

In defense of his actions, which he maintains are in accordance with the law, Mudenda pointed to a recall order issued by Tshabangu on the 7th of November, which he cited as the basis for his decision. He asserted that the court order was passed in respect of recalls that shall arise from Tuesday going onwards.

Mudenda cemented his position, stating that the notice of the recall is effective from the date of the letter (from Tshabangu), which is the 7th of November. Hence the interim relief delivered by the High Court did not preclude the expulsion of the 18 CCC legislators. 

Among the casualties of this latest political carnage are esteemed legislators such as Admore Chievero (Chegutu West), Stephen Chatiza (Goromonzi West), Gift Ostallos Siziba (Pelandaba), and Tapfumanei Willard Madzimbamuto (Seke). 

The expulsion also reached Oliver Mutasa (Zvimba East), Amos Chibaya (Mkoba North), Emma Muzondiwa (Midlands PR), Machirairwa Mugidho (Masvingo PR), Constance Chihota (Mashonaland East PR), Monica Mukwada (Manicaland PR), Sekai Mungani (Midlands PR), Linnet Mazingaidzo (Harare), and Dephine Gutsa (Mashonaland East PR), leaving a void within the opposition's ranks.

Furthermore, the devastating recalls have extended their reach to the upper echelons of the political hierarchy, as five senators also faced expulsion. 

Prominent senators Jameson Timba, Webster Maonera, Vongai Tome, Editor Matamisa, and Ralph T Magunje were not spared from the sweeping tide, leaving the opposition reeling from the tumultuous consequences.

CCC, accused of being glaringly stuporous in the wake of these overt attacks, now finds itself at a critical juncture; grappling with internecine struggles and increasing pressure on leader Nelson Chamisa to take decisive action against the relentless assault on his party's existence. 

As these dramatic political events continue to unfurl—with the possibility of the opposition's annihilation—the collective fate of Zimbabwe's political landscape precariously hangs in the balance. 

Evidently, the pervasive uncertainty and apprehension that has enveloped the foggy atmosphere of Zimbabwean politics has inescapably made the nation wonder what lies ahead as the opposition is ostensibly hapless in the face of a menacing existential threat to the largest opposition party in Zimbabwe. 

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