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Man's bid to overturn jail term flops

by Staff reporter
31 Oct 2018 at 05:18hrs | Views
Attempts by a Harare man to have his one year jail sentence for contempt of court overturned hit a brick wall after the High Court ruled that his application was not urgent.

Takunda Mujimu will spend some time in prison as his application will now follow normal court procedures.

High Court Judge Justice Jacob Manzunzu ruled that Mujimu's application is not urgent after he took more than a year to respond to a contempt of court order granted on October 4, 2017. Mujimu only approached the court with a certificate of urgency when he was sent to prison on September 12, this year.

"The need to act was on October 4, 2017 when the order for his imprisonment was pronounced. No explanation has been given why he did not act for the past one year," ruled Justice Manzunzu.

"The urgency is self-created. Now that he has been lodged in prison, the applicant (Mujimu) requests this court to put everything aside and attend to his case," he added.

Justice Manzunzu also took a swipe at legal practitioners who fail to properly advise their clients and warned them that time will come when those, who cursorily file certificates of urgency, will be called to court to explain.

"Legal practitioners are officers of this court and they owe a duty to the court to assist it in proper administration of justice," said Justice Manzunzu.

Circumstances surrounding the case are that on July 3, 2009 a provisional order for both a mandatory and prohibiting interdict was granted against Mujimu and it was confirmed on September 23, 2009.

Contempt of court proceedings were lodged against Mujimu after he continuously acted in defiance of the court order. Mujimu was subsequently sentenced to one year imprisonment.

Source - the herald