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Court overturns Zimbabwe opposition leader’s appointment

nelson chamisa

Zimbabwe's opposition party Movement for Democratic Change Alliance (MDC) leader Nelson Chamisa addresses the Commission investigating the post-election violence of the August 1 in Zimbabwe, in Harare on November 26, 2018. - Zimbabwe's opposition leader distanced his party today from post-election protests on August 1 in which six people were killed and several others wounded after soldiers opened fire. Testifying during an inquiry probing the killing of the six people, Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) leader Nelson Chamisa said his party was not a perpetrator but rather a victim of state-sponsored violence. (Photo by Jekesai NJIKIZANA / AFP)

A Zimbabwe judge has overturned the appointment of the main opposition MDC party’s leader Nelson Chamisa, rendering invalid all decisions he has made in the role, state media said Wednesday.

High Court judge Edith Mushore ruled against Chamisa’s appointment as one of the party’s vice presidents three years ago, upholding a legal challenge lodged by a rival party member.

“All the decisions made under (the) Nelson Chamisa administration are null and void. He cannot preside over party matters,” the state-run Herald newspaper said in its court report.

The MDC, which has been plagued by infighting, dismissed the ruling and accused President Emmerson Mnangagwa and the ruling ZANU-PF party of being behind it.

“We fundamentally disagree with the judgement. The choice of leaders of any political party, the world over, is the sole preserve of the members of that party,” it said in a statement.

“We are fully aware of the machinations and strategies being deployed by the Mnangagwa administration to destabilise and destroy (the party).”

Veteran MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai appointed Nelson Chamisa and Engineer Elias Mudzuri as party co-vice presidents before Tsvangirai’s death last year.

Chamisa then took over as party leader and was the MDC candidate in presidential elections last year, which were won by Mnangagwa.

Chamisa insists that fraud denied him victory in the election, which came after Robert Mugabe’s ousting in 2017.

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