Former Movement for Democratic Change vice-president Thokozani Khupe was today recalled from Parliament but her colleague Obert Gutu said they had instructed constitutional expert and lawyer Lovemore Madhuku to lodge an urgent chamber application seeking an order to set aside the recall.
Acting Speaker Reuben Marumahoko said Parliament was notified on 10 April that the MDC-T was recalling Khupe since she was no longer a member of the party.
Marumahoko said he was therefore declaring the proportional representation seat for Bulawayo Metropolitan Province vacant.
Khupe’s expulsion could kick off the battle for the MDC-T brand as Khupe has already registered her party with the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission as MDC-T.
ZEC chair Priscillah Chigumba notified the Nelson Chamisa led faction about this but added that her organization would not be involved in any factional battles but warned that this could present problems when the parties go to elections.
Khupe was expelled from the party together with Abednigo Bhebhe and Obert Gutu.
Gutu is not a legislator but Bhebhe represents Nkayi South.
The MDC-T, however, it appears did not recall Bhebhe.
THE ACTING SPEAKER (HON. MARUMAHOKO): I would like to notify this House that on the 10th of April, 2018, Parliament was notified by the Movement for Democratic Change MDC-T that Honourable Doctor Thokozani Khupe, Proportional Representation Member of Parliament, had ceased to be a member of the Movement for Democratic Change, MDC-T party and therefore, no longer represents the interests of the party in Parliament.
Section 129 (1) (k) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe provides that:
“A seat of a Member of Parliament becomes vacant if the Member has ceased to belong to the political party of which he or she was a Member when elected to Parliament and the political party concerned, by written notice to the Speaker or the President of the Senate, as the case may be, has declared that the Member has ceased to belong to it”
Pursuant to the above, I do hereby inform this House that a Proportional Representation vacancy has arisen in Bulawayo Metropolitan Province by operation of this law.
The necessary administrative measures will be taken to inform His Excellency, the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe and the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) of the existence of the vacancy in line with Section 39 (1) of the Electoral Act, [Chapter 2:13] as amended.