SELF-STYLED People’s Democratic Party (PDP) official Benjamin Rukanda who could not be located when the High Court barred his attempt to recall Harare mayor Jacob Mafume and two councillors has now surfaced and wants the matter revisited.
High Court judge Justice Webster Chinamora granted an interdict against Rukanda by consent after Mafume, and councillors Simon Chabuka and Arnold Dube had challenged a letter pencilled on September 14 which purported that their positions were now vacant because they had been recalled from PDP.
On September 24, when the matter was heard, Rukanda was unreachable and efforts to locate him at the address he had proffered were fruitless after it was established that he was not an occupant at the premises.
Rukanda now claims that when the matter was decided by Chinamora he was not aware and only realised through social media that an order had been obtained against him.
“I read through the social media that the respondents had obtained an order against me, that is when I approached the registrar of the High Court who furnished me with the provisional order which had been granted against me,” Rukanda said.
“On October 12, I filled my opposing affidavit with the registrar and proceeded to serve the respondents. Despite the filing and service of notice of opposition against confirmation of the provisional order the respondents have not done anything to prosecute the case.”
Rukanda claims that after taking that action Mafume and the other respondents have not done anything to have the matter prosecuted and should be dismissed for want of prosecution.
In the application, PDP secretary-general Settlement Chikwinya had urged the courts not to accept any submissions from Rukanda because they did not know him at their party.
He described Rukanda’s conduct as an affront to constitutionalism which would make the public lose confidence in electoral processes.
“The letter by Rukanda is meant to cause confusion. It has since come to my attention that Rukanda has always been an impostor bent on causing divisions in PDP. I aver that there is no legal basis for Moyo to give consideration of a fraudulent letter,” Chikwinya said. “I aver further that acting in terms of the letter will be a mockery to democracy and a violation of the constitutional rights of the applicants. It will also set a bad precedent in that anyone can purport to write on behalf of a party or institution without even a single proof of having authority to represent that party or faction.”