MDC-T president Douglas Mwonzora has defended the appointment of former vice-president Kembo Mohadi’s daughter Abigail Mohadi Ambrose as a Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) commissioner.
Abigail is one of the six people who were recently appointed Zec commissioners by President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
In an interview with The NewsHawks, Mwonzora, who was also part of the interviewing panel, said it was unfair that Mohadi be barred from holding public office because of who her parents are.
“Mrs Ambrose has rights like every other Zimbabwean and I think it’s unfair that she is prohibited from holding public office because of her parentage. We believe that she (Abigail) is her own woman capable of making her own independent decisions, therefore who her parents are in this case are not an issue,” Mwonzora said.
“Currently there is no law that prohibits children of politicians or prominent people from being appointed to public offices. In this case, every step that led to the appointment of the commissioners was done publicly and Mrs Ambrose was chosen because she was qualified, her credentials were objectively verified.”
Asked on why they (MDC-T) recommended Mohadi’s appointment considering the conflict of interested associated with it, Mwonzora said there was no way that his party could have singularly decide the outcome of the interviews.
“Our party has 30% representation in Parliament of Zimbabwe’s committee on Standing Rules and Orders. During the interviews, panelists from MDC-T, myself included and Zanu PF, were required to score candidates out of 5 depending on how they would have responded to a question. Therefore on the basis of partisanship alone, it was not possible that we singularly decide the outcome of the interviews,” Mwonzora said.
He added that once 15 out of the 32 candidates who had been interviewed to become commissioners had been shortlisted, it was up to the President to decide on who was going to be part of the required six commissioners according to the constitution.
Mwonzora said it was therefore unfair that legislators be grilled over who ended up being appointed commissioner yet the President had the ultimate say.