MASVINGO — An assistant commissioner in the Zimbabwe Republic Police, who successfully appealed against both his sentence and conviction for allegedly facilitating the release of a fraud suspect, has petitioned Home Affairs minister Kembo Mohadi to probe his boss, Commissioner-General of Police Augustine Chihuri, on allegations of corruption and crime cover-up charges for senior officers within the institution.
By Tatenda Chitagu
Assistant Commissioner (Operations) Gideon Baloyi made headlines last year after being slapped with a nine-month jail term for allegedly trying to protect Nevermind Kufakunesu, accused of swindling local businessman Batsirai Mupindu of chickens worth $21 000.
Baloyi was later set free by the High Court on October 21 last year. He has since been transferred to Masvingo.
Before turning to Mohadi, Baloyi also wrote a letter to Chihuri and Deputy Commissioner-General (Crime) Godwin Matanga, but got no response, prompting him to turn to the minister for recourse.
In a leaked biting four-page letter with the institution’s logo titled, ZRP: A Transforming Organisation Weighing Heavily on Transparency, and copied to President Robert Mugabe, Baloyi alleged that the law was selectively applied on him when there were senior cops he named who were walking scot-free despite committing heinous crimes.
One of the senior cops (name supplied), still serving in the force, allegedly shot dead a street kid that had stolen a mobile phone from him, but has not been prosecuted.
In what analysts said “is an open season” due to factionalism in government and the ruling Zanu PF party, Baloyi dared Chihuri for treating him in a “devilish way”, declaring: “It is game on, let’s play.”
“Sir, what I am humbly asking is for you to persuade the Commissioner-General of the Police to take his child killer to court for justice to take its course. My letter I wrote to him on 7 December, narrates how the killer was shamelessly rewarded for killing a simple, defenceless street kid in cold blood.
“His promotion to the current rank he is holding is more of a reward for his gruesome, senseless murder. This act by the organisation does not translate to the much-talked about transparency by the ZRP,” he added.
He also named an ex-commissioner and a superintendent whose corruption cases were allegedly swept under the carpet while another ex-commissioner resigned abruptly to claim benefits when charged with criminal abuse of office.
“I am sure this document will not offend particular individuals, but it is meant to correct our organisational policies that laws of the land should not be applied to selected individuals.
“Defeating the course of justice, according to my understanding, applies equally to all public office holders, police officers included. The million dollar question is, ‘Will they ever stand trial or they will simply go scot-free?’”
Baloyi also added a Zanu PF factional perspective to the dispute.
“I feel that my persecution came about as a result of positive campaigns for our highly principled and God-given leader, President R G Mugabe. Saka ndofirawo kutakura bhatye rashefu wangu here? If that is the case, let it be. I will never stop supporting him (Mugabe) and Zanu PF.”
He described his arrest and incarceration as “a miscarriage of justice” and said Chihuri “is tasting his own medicine as he forced him to retaliate”.
Mohadi was unreachable on his mobile phone yesterday.