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Get out of Harvest House -court orders MDC Alliance

Riot police mill outside Morgan Richard Tsvangirai House (formerly Harvest House) in this file photo.

A Harare magistrates’ court has granted the Movement for Democratic Change-T led by Thokozani Khupe an order compelling the opposition party to evict from Harvest House some youth that took over the building on Sunday, claiming that they were members of the original party, which is supposed to hold an Extraordinary Congress to replace the late founding president Morgan Tsvangirai.

The applicants – MDC-T and Morgen Komichi – sought the order to evict the respondents – MDC Alliance secretary general Chalton Hwende and MDC Alliance led by Nelson Chamisa – from the building, which was seized by the Khupe group in June this year from the Chamisa formation.

In authorising the eviction, the court said Hwende and MDC Alliance should not interfere with the operations of Morgen Richard Tvangirai House, formerly known as Harvest House. At the same time, police were authorised to carry out the eviction.

Hwende and MDC Alliance were “ordered not to harass, assault or commit any act of violence against first applicant’s members or second applicant in any manner likely to lead to breach of peace. The first respondents be and are hereby ordered not to tae possession of the first applicant’s premises without a valid court order.”

The police was ordered “to use all the necessary means to maintain law and order as the first applicant’s premises and to enforce the provisions of this order.”

But the MDC Alliance declared the court order null and void.

In a series of tweets, MDC Alliance attorney, Thabani Mpofu, said, “The Magistrate’s Crt (Court) does not have jurisdiction to issue an order regarding the occupation of HH (Harvest House). The value to the occupier is not susceptible to quantification in monetary terms so as to bring the dispute within the court’s monetary jurisdiction. Any such order would be a nullity

“A null order cannot be obeyed. It is unlawful for anyone to obey a void order. There is no need for a court order declaring it void. It is null and void without further ado. You cannot place something on nothing and expect it to stand. It will fall. A spoliation just like an eviction order cannot be granted ex parte (on the motion of one party to the dispute). Every lawyer knows that. Do not be used. Do not commit criminal misconduct. Stay out of it.”

The MDC-T took over Harvest House claiming that it was following a Supreme Court order that declared Chamisa’s leadership of the MDC as null and void.

The MDC-T has since recalled some lawmakers and councilors said to be aligned to the MDC Alliance. – VOA.

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