Priscilla Chigumba is a Zimbabwean lawyer, a judge of the High Court of Zimbabwe as well as the Chairperson-designate of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC). Justice Chigumba replaces Justice Rita Makarau as the chairperson of ZEC and is set to be sworn in on the 1st of February 2018.
Chigumba attended St Ignatius High School and obtained 15 Advanced Level points in 1989. She later obtained a Bachelor of Law degree in the United Kingdom.
After graduating she joined Gollop and Blank law firm in 1994. She practised as a lawyer for six years before joining PG Industries as assistant company secretary. She later formed her own law firm before joining the Justice and Legal Affairs Ministry as a magistrate in 2004. Chigumba served as a resident magistrate and provincial magistrate before being seconded to work as a senior professional research assistant in the Office of the Chief Justice. She was sworn in as Justice of the High Court on December 20, 2012
Suspending the police ban on demonstrations
In 2016 Chigumba reversed a two week ban on protests issued by the police citing the deteriorating security situation.Police had issued the controversial Statutory Instrument 101 A of 2016 which imposed a ban on all protests in Harare Central policing area.The ban triggered a court challenge filed by PDP leader and lawyer Tendai Biti on behalf of the opposition parties coalescing under the National Electoral Reform Agenda (NERA).In her ruling, High Court judge Priscilla Chigumba said the freezing of the police ban was for seven days.
Allegations of soliciting for a $20 000 bribe
It was alleged that Justice Priscilla Chigumba solicited for a $20 000 bribe from one of the parties in a case she was presiding over.
Justice Chigumba was grilled by members of the JSC led by Chief Justice Godfrey Chidyausiku over a complaint that it received to the effect that the judge had sent an agent to solicit for a bribe from a Mr Kanokanga who was one of the parties in a case in which she was presiding over.
Justice Chidyausiku said the JSC had received a written complaint from Mr Kanokanga and said while they had asked Justice Chigumba to make a written response, she was obliged to comment on the allegations since the commission was troubled over the allegations given that she was now seeking higher office.