Five Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) officers have taken Police Commissioner-General Augustine Chihuri to the High Court seeking an order barring the ZRP from trying them in terms of the Police Act.
BY CHARLES LAITON
The police officers have filed an urgent chamber application under case number HCCA62/15, accusing the ZRP of disregarding the rule of law by insisting on charging them despite a pending High Court matter challenging their convictions.
“The Constitution mandates the ZRP to enforce the law, but this behaviour speaks badly of the abuse of that mandate by people with no respect of the rule of law and abuse of the rule of law. The purpose of this so-called board of suitability is to discharge us from the force,” the officers said.
“To further demonstrate that the respondents (Chihuri and the board presidents) are being vindictive, all the applicants and other members who were on the unlawful training programme have been summoned to appear here in Harare before board presidents, with strict instructions to recommend our discharge so that we get punished. This process is just a formality, our fate is decided.”
According to the police officers, all represented by lawyer Norman Mugiya, sometime in 2014, they were all charged at different intervals in terms of the Police Act and were all convicted and sentenced to various detention sentences.
They, however, challenged the convictions and Justice Francis Bere ordered their immediate release from the unlawful and unconstitutional detention.
The move allegedly angered the ZRP which then called for a suitability board to put them on trial for challenging the force.
“We are clearly being punished for seeking justice against the respondents through this court. It defies logic that the very respondents had taken us to an unlawful training claiming that we were not candidates for discharge, but all of a sudden we become good candidates to be discharged soon after we won our case against unlawful detention. This is sad indeed and speaks very badly of the once vibrant ZRP, which is now being managed like a social club,” the officers said.