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Appointing acting ministers unconstitutional

THE announced intention by Zanu PF to appoint acting ministers through the office of the president is not only unfortunate but it is as illegal as it is ill-thought-out.

Such a decision, which was made against the backdrop of a serious history of callous disregard to the GPA and lack of respect of the MDC-T as an equal partner is a decision with grave constitutional implications.
One of the obvious constitutional implications is that the execution of executive powers by this government is crippled. Executive power resides in the office of the President, the Prime Minister and Cabinet. The proper quorum and representation of Cabinet does not lie in individual ministries but in their respective political organs.
Put simply, Cabinet executive power is being shared by the three political parties represented in the same. That means that if one of the political parties withdraws from that Cabinet, then the same cannot function and the same cannot make any meaningful decisions. This has been evident in the last two weeks where this forum has been reduced to a talking shop.
The second critical implication is that to the extent that the president acts in consultation or in agreement with the prime minister on all key decisions of the state and to the extent that as a result of the disengagement the two are not meeting, this means that many key decisions are not being made. The conclusion on the appointments of constitutional bodies and commissions following interviews held by parliament is a case in point.

lMDC-T Information and Publicity Department.

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