President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s hand has allegedly been sniffed in the recent recommendations of candidates for the Constitutional Court judges.

Meanwhile, according to public interviews to determine who get the posts, the top three performers as revealed by the Justice Service Commission interviewing panel were:

1. Justice Rita Makarau

2. Justice Paddington Garwe

3. Justice Happias Zhou

The order is based on how they were ranked according to their performance, however, the five judges recommended by JSC for ConCourt appointment are:

1. Justice Rita Makarau
2. Justice Paddington Garwe
3. Justice Bharat Patel
4. Justice Ben Hlatshwayo
5. Justice Anne-Marie Gorowa

Mising is Justice Happias Zhou, despite him had been among the top three performers in the interviews.

It is reported that after Justice Happias Zhou came third in recent public interviews for ConCourt judges, but, Chief Justice Luke Malaba arm twisted the interviewing panel to remove Zhou’s name from the list recommended for appointment.

Apparently, it is further alleged that of the seven judges interviewed by the JSC panel chaired by Chief Justice Luke Malaba, five were nominated by Mnangagwa’s office.

These are Justices Chinembiri Bhunu, Paddington Garwe, Annie-Marie Gowora, Ben Hlatshwayo and Rita Makarau.

The list excluded Justices Bharat Patel and Happias Zhou.

Meanwhile, the Constitutional Court is a superior court of record established in terms of section 166 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, 2013.

It consists of; the Chief Justice and the Deputy Chief Justice and five other judges of the Constitutional Court.

Jurisdiction; the Constitutional Court is the highest court in all constitutional matters and its decisions on constitutional matters bind all other courts.

The Constitutional court decides only constitutional matters and issues connected with decisions on constitutional matters, this include dealing with Bills referred from Parliament or Senate for advice on their constitutionality.

Subject to the Constitution, only the Constitutional Court may advise on the constitutionality of any proposed legislation, but may do so only where the legislation concerned has been referred to it in terms of the Constitution.

Its jurisdiction also include hearing and determining disputes relating to election to the office of President, as in the matter of MDC-Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa Vs President Emmerson Mnangagwa, following the disputed 2018 Presidential elections.

Chamisa lost the case, the Court ruled in favour of Mnangagwa.