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Mamombe mum on abduction

by Staff reporter
01 Feb 2022 at 05:26hrs | Views
LEGISLATOR Joana Mamombe yesterday refused to tell the court what happened after they left Harare Central police station in a police vehicle on the day they alleged to have been abducted sometime in May 2020.

Testifying in her application for referral of their matter to the Constitutional Court, Mamombe chronicled events of the day in question from the time they left Warren Park 1 Shops in Harare going to the police station and ended at the time they left the Central Police Station.

She is jointly applying for a referral of the matter to the ConCourt with Cecilia Chimbiri on allegations of faking their abduction.

Mamombe was quick to accuse Government officials and Zanu-PF members of being responsible for violating her constitutional rights.

She claimed her prosecution was political.

Asked by the State led by Mr Tafara Chirambira and Mr Michael Reza to explain what happened after they left Harare Central Police Station on May 13, 2020 while in the police vehicle, Mamombe refused to comment saying:

"This is not a trial and my defence asked me what was necessary. My rights continue to be violated as I stand here. I feel this is not fair and this is not trial. With due respect, my application for referral ends from where I left."

"Clearly, you have refused to answer my question," asked Mr Chirambira.

Mamombe then replied:

"Yes."

Mamombe's answer prompted Chief Magistrate Mrs Faith Mushure to ask her lawyers Mr Alec Muchadehama and Mr Jeremiah Bamu to remind her to answer questions asked by the State.

While being led by Mr Bamu, Mamombe raised complaints against the late Minister of Foreign Affairs Sibusiso Moyo, Home Affairs Minister Kazembe Kazembe, former deputy Information Minister Energy Mutodi, Information, Publicity, and Broadcasting Services permanent secretary Mr Nick Mangwana, Zanu-PF's finance secretary Patrick Chinamasa and information director Tafadzwa Mugwadi.

She accused them of pushing a narrative on mainstream and social media that they had faked their abductions, which left them convicted in public opinion.

"My concern is that I will not get justice since some of these things are already in public.

"I personally feel that these current proceedings are a process of going through what I suffered from May 13 and if the torture continues, no one cares about the prejudice we are incurring.

"We asked for further particulars from the police so that we can prepare our case and they vehemently denied.

"How can we get justice under these circumstances. Is this prosecution a way of persecution? With all that we presented, there are serious violations of my rights.

"I personally feel that this prosecution is very political. Very, very political in the sense that my rights were violated by my political rivals.

"This is a political case," she said.

Mamombe claimed that she was convinced that their prosecution was political because she discovered that there were some Government officials who had their personal information, especially medical data during the time they were hospitalised.

"This was not by coincidence that my political rivals have information that was part of police documents. How did they get that information? The answer is clear that they were being furnished by police officers.

"I insist that this is a political case. We are being victimised by supporting the MDC-Alliance.

"Clearly, our political rights are being violated. I am a legislator and know when my rights are being violated.

"I do not think we are going to receive a free and fair trial because from what I have said this amounts to political persecution," she said.

Asked by prosecutor Mr Chirambira, during cross-examination, how Government and Zanu-PF officials' statements in the media would impede their right to a fair trial, Mamombe replied:

"My rights are being violated in the sense that the statements by high ranking Government officials and Zanu-PF officials are derogatory and already suggest that we are guilty of the offence."

Chimbiri also took to the witness stand and echoed the same statements during their application for referral to the ConCourt.

She also accused Government officials of infringing her rights saying some of them would pre-empt their court proceedings.

"My rights were infringed. My right to privacy has been made a mockery of in this country by Government officials and by police.

"My right to a fair trial was violated especially when State institutions and Government officials, who are supposed to be civil servants vested interests in cases like ours.

"It is very worrying," she said.

"The ruling party through all the actions has shown desperation to cleanse the human rights violation tag on its citizens.

"This desperation was firstly shown by inconsistencies that happened after our arrest on 13 May.

"Police spokesperson Paul Nyathi announced our arrest after social media said "free our girls," she said.

Mr Bamu said they want to bring more witnesses to testify in their application.

He indicated that they wanted to obtain a documentary from ZBCTV, which they want to use in their application.

The matter continues tomorrow.

Source - The Herald
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