Charumbira wasn’t fired from Pan African Parliament

The Claim: Claim: Chief Charumbira fired from PAP for embezzling US$1.2 million
The Verdict: claim verdict

Claim: Chief Charumbira fired from PAP for embezzling US$1.2 million


The Pan African Parliament (PAP) has expressed severe concern about the spread of a false news report on numerous media platforms saying that PAP President Chief Fortune Charumbira was fired for embezzling nearly US$1.2 million.

The fake story is based on a memorandum written by the “illegally appointed,” ‘Director of the Bureau,’ Emmanuel K. Afedor, to the Clerk of the PAP, Madam Lindiwe Khumalo, instructing the Clerk to begin preparations for the convening of the Third Ordinary Session of the Sixth Parliament of the PAP and declaring vacancies in the Bureau.

In a statement, the acting president of PAP, Lucia Maria Mendes Gonclaves Dos Passos, dismissed the fake story “with the contempt it deserves” and put on record that Chief Charumbira is still the President of PAP until the plenary decides otherwise.

The acting president said the fake narrative was driven by the political ambitions of the Second Vice President, Dr Ashebir Woldegiorgis Gayo and his cohort.

“A power hungry, self-appointed Acting President does not have the power nor the authority to dismiss anyone at PAP, let alone the President,” said PAP’s acting president.

After Chief Charumbira was sworn in in the Parliament of Zimbabwe, on September 9 2023, the acting president said he was primed to return and assume his position as PAP President as a returning member of PAP in line with provisions of Rule 9(3) of the PAP Rules of Procedure.

“Therefore there is no vacancy in the position of PAP president.”

The allegations of embezzling US$1.2 million are “nothing more than a malicious vendetta of vilification and character assassination driven by the shameless political ambitions of the Second Vice President, Dr Ashebir Woldegiorgis Gayo and his cohort.”

“There is no substance at all to the allegations,” Passos said, noting that Dr Gayo and his team are frantically trying to ‘cook up’ evidence to back that claim  and have been harassing staff in the PAP’s Finance Department to give them details of the missions that Chief Charumbira has undertaken since the beginning of the Sixth Parliament.

This includes details of support staff hired during sessions in a “desperate bid to find something that can stick,” said the acting president.

 Under Rule 17C of the PAP rules of Procedure, it is the Bureau that determines the draft agenda and programmes of the Sessions of the Parliament. 

The acting president said for the avoidance of doubt, Article 12.5 of the PAP Protocol states that the Bureau shall consist of the President and four Vice Presidents representing each of the five regions of Africa. 

“Accordingly Dr Gayo acting alone has no authority to unilaterally convene a session of Parliament,” Passos said.

“Secondly, a session of the PAP cannot last for two days unless it is an Extraordinary Session. When a session is called for a single purpose, as indicated in Mr Afedor’s memo, then it becomes an Extraordinary Session and triggers rule 29 of the PAP Rules of Procedure, which states that convening such an Extraordinary Session requires written notice signed by two thirds of the PAP PArliamentarians. In other words, Dr Gayo has no authority to call for an Extraordinary Session either without the formal endorsement of a two thirds majority of the PAP Parliamentarians. 

“The memo and the purported declaration of vacancies are, therefore, null and void,” said the acting president. 

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