MDC-T senators on Tuesday proposed that convicted murderers be quarantined instead of being sent to the gallows, arguing that human life is sacrosanct.
The proposal was made in the Upper House as senators were debating a motion on abolition of the death penalty.
REPORT BY VENERANDA LANGA
Hwata senator Rorana Muchichwa (MDC-T) said the country should abolish the death penalty, adding that the sentence was imposed during the colonial era in a bid to discourage people from participating in the liberation struggle.
“All countries in the United Nations have agreed this law should no longer be applicable,” Muchichwa said.
“If one is convicted and proved to have murdered people, they should be quarantined until they meet their natural death.”
Bikita senator Kokerai Rugara concurred, adding: “Killing is killing. When you kill a person, you are a murderer and when you kill as government or as an organised group, you don’t want to call yourselves murderers, but you are.
“Really, some of the killing is organised and organised killing is what we see when we have on our statutes an eye-for-an-eye principle. That is, if you kill, you better be killed too.”
Rugara said hanging was not a form of punishment because a penalty was meant to reform a criminal.
“You punish to educate. You punish to make someone better, but can anybody in this House tell me what happens when you have exercised your death penalty?” he asked rhetorically.
“How does a dead person learn? The murderer is himself a wrongdoer, but then whoever kills him is also a wrongdoer of similar crime, although some of it is organised.”
The draft constitution, if adopted, will abolish the death penalty for women and men under the age of 21 and those above 70 years.