MDC-T secretary-general, Douglas Mwonzora, has in uncharacteristic fashion, launched an attack on Mberengwa North legislator Tafanana Zhou after the Zanu PF Member of Parliament last Thursday moved a motion in support of the recalling of opposition MDC Alliance’s Harare West MP Joana Mamombe following medical reports insinuating that the female parliamentarian was mentally-ill.
Despite earning the infamy of habitually recalling MPs aligned to Nelson Chamisa’s MDC-A, Mwonzora, who is a key figure in the MDC-T led by Thokozani Khupe, said the sentiments by Zhou were not only sadistic, unfair and unjust but also smacked of hypocrisy on the part of the Zanu PF MP.
Instead, Mwonzora said the Harare West parliamentarian, who together with two other female MDC-A youth leaders face charges of faking their abductions, must be given ample time for rest and recuperation.
“The calls by a Zanu PF MP for the recall of Hon. Joanna Mamombe on account of her illness are sadistic, unfair, unjust and hypocritical. She must be given enough time to rest and recuperate. Let he who is without a mental malady cast the first stone!” said Mwonzora in comments posted on his Twitter handle Sunday morning.
Together with her co-accused Cecilia Chimbiri and Netsai Marova, Mamombe faces criminal charges of faking abduction in an attempt to soil the image of President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s Zimbabwe Government.
And doctors examining the outspoken MP have said that she cannot stand trial in court, arguing that the legislator was suffering from a mental disorder.
In the wake of the latest confirmation of Mamombe’s current medical condition by two Government doctors, Zhou raised a point of previledge Thursday, calling for the dismissal of the Harare West lawmaker from representing her constituency in parliament.
“Mr. Speaker Sir. My point of privilege arises from our national Constitution, Section 129 (1) (m) that states that, ‘The seat of a Member of Parliament becomes vacant if the Member is certified to be mentally disordered or intellectually handicapped under any law in force in Zimbabwe’. Honourable Joanna Mamombe was certified as mentally ill by two government doctors. I therefore honourable Speaker Sir, ask that a Privileges Committee be set to look into the matter,” Zhou said.
Speaker of Parliament Advocate Jacob Mudenda, however, said the national House of Assembly was going to be guided by the Judiciary with regards to MP Mamombe’s matter.
“We should be able to get an official response from the judiciary and the doctor’s reports and compare with whosoever is the sponsor of the honourable member,” he said.
“However, because the matter is still with our courts and the courts have not pronounced themselves as to the results of the medical findings, we shall have to be cautious in proceeding accordingly until such time that the matter has been fully ventilated by the courts,” said Advocate Mudenda.
Early this year, Mamombe, Chimbiri and Marova were allegedly abducted by suspected state-hired assailants before being dumped in bad shape at a shopping center known as Muchapondwa, in Bindura. The trio narrated harrowing ordeals of brutal torture and sexual abuse at the hands of their captors.
Their case has, in dramatic fashion, taken an about-turn, with the state now accusing the three MDC-A politicians of faking their own abductions.