Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ziyambi Ziyambi said by-elections will not be held this year because the government is channelling resources towards the fight against the coronavirus.
Speaking during a ZANU PF Mashonaland West provincial coordinating committee meeting in Chinhoyi over the weekend, Ziyambi said:
We cannot have by-elections this year because we are still faced with the coronavirus pandemic, so President Emmerson Mnangagwa said let’s defer by-elections.
We are simply deferring. We are not saying they will not be there, we said let’s defer, and use the resources that we have to fight the pandemic and save lives.
So we cannot risk the lives of our people and go to a by-election when we have an opportunity to do it after and save the lives of our people.
In October, Health and Childcare Minister and Vice President Constantino Chiwenga announced the indefinite suspension of elections citing the risk posed by COVID-19.
The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) had set 5 December as the day for the by-elections before Chiwenga’s directive.
However, according to a local legal think-tank, Veritas, the decision by the government to suspend the by-elections was unconstitutional.