BULAWAYO – Former Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko is heading
to court to force the government to pay him his pension, his lawyer said.
Mphoko, forced out in a military coup that ousted former
President Robert Mugabe in November 2017, is entitled to a lifetime salary,
security and an office, according to his lawyer Professor Welshman Ncube.
“We’ve been going round in circles and haven’t achieved any
progress. We’ve been communicating back and forth… the communication we have
so far with the Ministry of Justice through the advice of the Attorney General
is that they appear to be conceding that he’s entitled to his pension, but
continue to dispute his entitlement to other benefits like security, office and
others,” Ncube told The Daily News.
The lawyer said government officials initially appeared to
take the view that Mphoko was not entitled to the pension he is seeking because
he did not serve out a full five-year term, having been appointed to the job in
Ncube said there was a conflict between the Presidential
Pensions Act, which government officials were relying on, and the country’s new
Constitution adopted in 2013. The Constitution is silent on the full term,
stating in section 102(3): “A person who has ceased to be President or Vice
President is entitled to receive; (a) a pension equivalent to the salary of a
sitting President or Vice President,
as the case may be; and (b) such allowances and other benefits as may be
prescribed under an Act of Parliament.”
Where an Act of Parliament is in conflict with the
Constitution, the latter is superior, Ncube said.
Source: Zim Live