Mnangagwa swears in new Zimbabwe election commission boss

High Court Judge Priscilla Chigumba will manage the elections body overseeing this year’s polls.

High Court Judge Priscilla Chigumba (front row, third from left) has been sworn in as the new chairperson of Zimbabwe Electoral Commission. Picture: @ZECzim/Twitter.

HARARE - President Emmerson Mnangagwa has sworn in a new chairperson of the country’s electoral commission.

High Court Judge Priscilla Chigumba will manage the elections body overseeing this year’s polls, but questions have been raised over whether she’s the right person for the job.

Priscilla Chigumba was sworn in by President Mnangagwa at State House earlier on Thursday.

She told the state ZBC broadcaster afterwards that she’d work towards ensuring free, fair and credible elections.

Chigumba won kudos late in 2017 for acquitting ThisFlag leader Evan Mawarire on charges of trying to overthrow the government of former president Robert Mugabe.

MDC secretary-general Douglas Mwonzora said on Twitter that his party looks forward to genuine and meaningful interaction with her commission.

The appointment is not without controversy; two years ago, the judge was accused of demanding a bribe from someone in a case she presided over, and critics say she shouldn’t have got this job before those allegations were cleared.