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What Zimbabwe MPs said about the Constitution Amendment Bill-Part Seven

HON. MARIDADI: On a point of order Mr. Chairman, it is factually incorrect that President Mugabe fired Chief Justice Gubbay. We do not want it to be recorded that President Mugabe fired Chief Justice Gubbay – [HON. MLISWA: I withdraw.] – I am not yet finished. I think we are putting on record that President Mugabe fired Chief Justice Gubbay. It is factually incorrect because Chief Justice Gubbay resigned. He tendered his resignation and the President accepted it. So, he did not fire him. When we debate, let us be factual. Let us not be pushed by emotions and say things that are wrong. President Mugabe respects the Constitution. He is a lawyer and he respects the Constitution. He would not have fired a sitting Chief Justice. Thank you Mr. Chairman.- [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible injerjections.] –

THE DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON: Order, order!

HON. MLISWA: Mr. Chairman, I said the President must fire a Chief Justice who is against the ideals. As such, Chief Justice Gubbay resigned, but I am saying the President must fire because Chief Justice Gubbay was certainly on the wrong and I am giving that as an example. I said he resigned but I said people like him who are against the struggle must be fired and that is why the President must have power.

HON. MAJOME: I have a point of order.

THE DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON: Order, order please. What is your point of order? 

HON. MAJOME: My point of order Mr. Chairman is that in terms of Section 190 of the Constitution, it is the responsibility of Parliament to uphold the Constitution and ensure that it is respected. What Hon. Mliswa is saying is a direct attack on everything – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]- Listen, it is a fundamental undermining of the pillars on which our system is, the rule of law is based and the separation of powers. This Constitution does not allow in terms of Section 164, it protects the independence of the Judiciary. The President is actually insulated from firing judges. What he is saying is defamatory of the President for him to insinuate that the President does not understand that basic role and to recommend that a judge be fired by the President is to display an alarming lack of basic understanding of what his role as a legislator, what the role of the Executive is and what the role of Parliament is.

These are basic and this debate then becomes a joke if a Member of Parliament thinks that it is okay to suggest that a President fires a judge. It is sacrilegious and it is defamatory of the Office of the President. He just needs to get some basic information and must understand what we are talking about.- [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]-

THE DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON: Order, order at the back. If you feel you have something to say, you can always stand up and also debate against whatever he has said.

HON. MAONDERA: Mr. Chairman, you recall that this august House is grappling with the attack on Members of Parliament when they go outside. Hon. Matambanadzo has just shouted to Hon. Majome saying saka wakarohwa kwaMutare. This means it is attesting to the fact that they are behind the attack of Hon. Members whenever they are moving around. So, can he please withdraw that statement?

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