Chief Nemamwa dethroned

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By Midweek Watch

HARARE – High Court Judge, Justice Webster Chinamhora has set aside and nullified the procedure used to appoint recently installed Chief Nemamwa, born Tranos Manjiva in a rulling handed down yesterday (19-05-23) in Harare, The Midweek Watch can reveal.

Justice Chinamhora ruled that Manjiva was irregularly appointed as Chief Nemamwa since the process did not go through the Provincial Chiefs Council as required by law, implying therefore that it was a nullity.

“Nemamwa Chieftainship has been set aside. The Masvingo Chiefs Provincial Council to lead in the selection of Acting Chief by June 30, 2023.

“It is unfortunate that Minister July Moyo did not follow thw laid down procedure as he jumped the Provincial Chiefs Council in the selection of the Chief.

“According to Chapter 203 of the Traditional Leaders Act the Minister should follow the recommendations of the Provincial Chiefs Council and has no right to appoint a Chief.

“The Chiefs Provincial Council makes recommendations to the Minister based on what they would have gathered from the people on the ground through the national Chiefs Council which will recommend to the Minister and then-Attorney General and finally to the President for the final recommendation,” said a source who attended the court case in Harare.

The ruling by Justice Chinamhora came after Jimmy T. Matambo one of the claimants to the Nemamwa throne had appealed to the High Court against the selection of Manjiva as the heir to the chieftainship.

Manjiva was appointed Chief Nemamwa in August last year and was installed at a private ceremony in December 2022 and the installation was contested by Matambo.

Matambo was represented by Charles Warara as his lawyer whilst the Ministry of Local Government and Public Works was represented by lawyers from the Attorney General’s Office.

The details of the judgment will be availed next week from the High of Zimbabwe.

Matambo argued that the Nemamwa chieftainship is his birthright because the Zavango blood runs in his veins. He also argued that Manjiva’s house was reserved for rainmaking purposes and had never been anywhere near the chieftainship.

He further claimed that Manjiva, who was appointed substantive Chief Nemamwa in Masvingo District, was sneaked into the position through the aid of Moyo, who circumvented procedures.

“It emerged on Friday, September 9, 2022, that the 1st respondent (Manjiva) had been sneaked into the position and has now been recommended by the second respondent (Moyo) to hold the restored position of Chief Nemamwa.

“This was not disclosed to me or other family members; nor was it disclosed to the two houses that sit on the chieftainship’s throne. They were not consulted or advised of the decision by the second respondent leading to the installation.”

Matambo said following the appointment of Manjiva, he appealed to the provincial chief’s assembly which reversed the appointment through the Masvingo district development coordinator (DDC), Roy Hove.

“The provincial chief’s assembly, which in terms of the Constitution of Zimbabwe is mandated to do the selection of a chief, clearly advised through the DDC Masvingo that it had reversed what the second respondent (Moyo) is proceeding to request the third respondent to endorse; thereby violating section 283 of the Constitution on which they base this appointment.”

“All the Nemamwa chieftainship houses did not agree to this decision by the second respondent (Moyo) and as such the second respondent (Moyo) is not only acting in violation of the Constitution of Zimbabwe but in breach of the law in that he is favouring first respondent (Manjiva) by siding with him and is not allowing due process provided in the appointment of a chief,” read part of the arguments by Matambo.

The Nemamwa Chieftainship was resuscitated in 2220 after it was defunct for many decades.