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'Govt not persecuting MDC activists'

by Staff reporter
16 Apr 2021 at 07:32hrs | Views
GOVERNMENT is not persecuting or victimising political activists but applies the law indiscriminately with the legal system providing checks and balances, a Cabinet Minister said.

Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ziyambi Ziyambi said this in the National Assembly on Wednesday during the Question-and-Answer session.

He was responding to MDC-Alliance MP for Magwegwe Constituency Mr Anele Ndebele who quizzed him on the arrests and detention of opposition and civic society activists, claiming that Government was clamping down on dissent.

Minister Ziyambi said the country respects separation of powers and there is nothing that suggests that there is victimisation of activists.

"I am not quite sure that there was a question but I heard a statement that there are those that are being arrested, activists. My answer is we have various Government departments to deal with specific issues. The police are supposed to ensure that peace and tranquility prevails in the country. Where they suspect that laws have been broken, they arrest the individuals and hand them over to the courts where the prosecutors will do their work and the magistrates will do their work. At each and every stage of the process our systems have checks and balances," said Minister Ziyambi.

"If you go to court, the prosecutors can vet and say there is no case or there is a case. Again, the magistrates can say you are guilty or not guilty. Again, the case can go for review or for appeal. So, we have several processes that ensure that the rights of our citizens are protected."

He said before commenting on legal issues, the public should allow for due legal processes to be followed. Quizzed on why Government was taking time to prosecute some of the alleged serious cases, Minister Ziyambi said Government's policy was to conclude all criminal cases as fast as it can but prosecution of cases also lies with the relevant arm of Government.

"Having said that, our desire is for all cases to be done as quickly as possible, hence the saying that justice delayed is justice denied. So, you should actually be happy that there are cases that are being done very fast and a conviction or otherwise is given. I think that is commendable, hearing it from you that there are cases that are being done fast enough to ensure that justice is done. That is our desire and aspiration. If there are cases that are taking long, then those are specific cases that perhaps we should allow the relevant authorities to look at and if there are complaints, they can be interrogated," said Minister Ziyambi.

Source - chroncile