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Court confirms Matiza victory

by Staff reporter
12 Feb 2019 at 22:38hrs | Views
THE Electoral Court has confirmed Transport and Infrastructural Development Minister Joel Biggie Matiza as the legitimate National Assembly member for Murehwa South.

Minister Matiza beat Mr Noah Mangondo in last year's harmonised election when he garnered 10 808 votes. Mr Mangondo, an independent candidate, trailed with 10 653, but challenged the results at the Electoral Court under case number RC24 /18.

Advocate Lewis Uriri, instructed by Mr Nickiel Mushangwe of Mushangwe & Company Legal Practitioners, strongly opposed the petition pointing to its defects.

After hearing arguments from both parties, Justice Esther Muremba threw it out with costs for failure to comply with Rule 21 of the Electoral Appeals, Applications and Petitions.

The Rule compels the petitioner to state all his grounds and the names of people alleged to have committed the malpractices on the face of the petition. Justice Muremba found the petition to be fatally defective.

"The petition as presented by the petitioner is fatally defective because it does not comply with the requirements of Rule 21 (e) and (f) of the Electoral Rules," she said.

"The cause of the complaint must be clearly and concisely pleaded in the petition at the time of its presentation. The reason for this is that the respondent is entitled to know the reason why his election is being challenged so that he is able to answer the case."

The court then declared Minister Matiza the winner.

"The petition is dismissed with costs," said Justice Muremba.

"The respondent (Minister Matiza) is declared duly elected member of the National Assembly for the Murewa South Constituency in accordance with the declaration of July 31 2018."

Mr Mangondo had argued that the transportation of ballot boxes and election material to the constituency command centre in Macheke was flawed.

Source - the herald

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