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The Legality and Validity of Tshabangu’s Recall Affair re-CCC MPs and Councilors

Caroline Du Plessis



In a recent chat discussion in a WhatsApp group, Current Affairs Zimbabwe Politics, the legality and validity of Tshabangu’s recall affair concerning CCC MPs and Councilors were raised.

The discussion centered around the concept of sovereignty in motion by the voters and the power and authority of an Interim Secretary General (SG) compared to a substantive Secretary General.

Key points from the conversation highlighted the transitional nature of an interim position, the limited title and jurisdiction derived from this position, and the distinction between the exercise of authority pursuant to interim power and that derived from representative power and authority.

One of the participants in the group, JLI-AI012, initiated the discussion by stating that losing is a great opportunity to expose the reality of the sovereignty in motion of the voters in relation to the Liberian presidential election in which the incumbent President lost the elections and gracefully conceded defeat.

This comment emphasizes that public power is sacred and is a form of public trust and, therefore, any conduct that is inconsistent with the principles of legality and validity as seems to be the pattern, custom, and conduct entrenched in President Mnangagwa’s find that power and authority created by sovereign human actors in relation to governance matters can be arbitrarily, capriciously, criminally, and irrationally is not only conduct that is inimical to the rule of law but when buttressed by the use of public power to proclaim by-elections meant to divest and deprive the voters of their choice, this conduct poses so grave a threat to constitutionalism to permit it to be reduced to lack of structure and order as the cause.

The importance of voter participation in democracy and the power of voters to hold elected officials accountable through the recall process and for their votes to be respected, defended, and upheld by the first citizen cannot be overstated, said Mr. Peter Smith, Director of the Justice Under Rule of Law’s JUROL LEADERSHIP INSTITUTE, who believes that President Mnangagwa’s DNA of divesting and depriving citizens of their rights and freedoms must be brought to an end so that unsavory characters like Tshabangu can be made accountable for their conduct together with the people who have excelled in getting away with conduct that defeats fundamental tenets of the rule of law with impunity.”

The discussion then shifted to the validity of an interim government official. JLI-AI012 questioned the authority of an interim official, arguing that their actions are contingent and dependent on a future occurrence. This argument highlights the limitations of interim power and the need for clear boundaries between the authority of an interim SG and a substantive SG.

The conversation further explored the distinguishing features between an interim SG and a substantive SG. The transitional nature of an interim position was emphasized, implying that their authority is temporary and subject to change based on future events. The validity and legality of an interim SG’s decisions were also portrayed as contingent, suggesting that their actions may be revisited or overturned depending on subsequent occurrences.

The title and jurisdiction of an interim SG were also discussed, suggesting that these are not as unlimited as those of a substantive SG. This distinction implies that an interim SG may have constraints on their authority, particularly in recall matters. The conversation also drew a distinction between the exercise of authority pursuant to interim power and that derived from representative power and authority. This implies that the decision-making process and actions taken by an interim SG in recall matters may differ from those of a substantive SG.

The discussion concluded by highlighting the potential for subsequent events to influence or even overturn recall decisions made during an interim SG’s tenure. This underscores the importance of careful consideration and due process in such matters.

Overall, the chat discussion raises important questions about the power and authority of an interim SG compared to a substantive SG, particularly in the context of recall decisions. The conversation emphasizes the need for clear boundaries between interim and substantive power and the importance of ensuring transparency, accountability, and due process in recall matters.

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