Zimbabwe: Mnangagwa Wins Hodzi Appointment Battle

President Emmerson Mnangagwa swears in new Prosecutor-General Kumbirai Hodzi at State House in Harare (file photo).

The Constitutional Court has dismissed an application which had been brought by Harare lawyer Joshua Chirambwe who was seeking the nullification of President Emmerson Mnangagwa's 2018 appointment of Kumbirai Hodzi as the country's substantive Prosecutor-General (PG).

In his application, Chirambwe had argued that Hodzi failed public interviews in the full glare of the public and as such, was not fit to occupy the top office.

Hodzi was part of several candidates who took part in public interviews in 2018 when the country sought a substantive PG following the departure of advocate Ray Goba.

Some of the candidates who participated in the interviews were Calvin Mantsebo, Tinomudaishe Chinyoka, Misheck Hogwe, Jessie Majome, Justice Maphios Cheda, Wendy Chingeya, Florence Ziyambi, Edios Marondedza and Noria Mashumba.

Mantsebo, Chinyoka and Hogwe, emerged in the top three.

In challenging Hodzi's eventual appointment, Chirambwe accused Mnangagwa of creating another list of candidates, but court ruled the lawyer failed to support his claims.

Reads the judgement of the bench chaired by Justice Paddington Garwe.

"Having considered the facts of this matter and the law, I reach the conclusion that the applicant has not established that there was such a failure by the President to fulfil the constitutional obligation imposed upon him by the Constitution in appointing the fifth respondent as the Prosecutor-General of Zimbabwe," said Garwe.

"I am of the further view that this application, largely predicated as it is on hearsay evidence, could not have been expected by the applicant to succeed.

"Unsubstantiated allegations of impropriety, based on the same hearsay, have been made against the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, the Judicial Service Commission and the Chief Justice. Consequently, the application falls to be dismissed with an order of costs on the ordinary scale."

Chirambwe had argued that the commissioners scored Hodzi badly.

"At the end of the day, he sat at the bottom of the pile. He was clearly and effectively out of the reckoning," Chirambwe said.

More From: New Zimbabwe

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