POLICE have been challenged to go beyond rhetoric and act against politicians and government ministers who break the law if they are to be taken seriously and fulfil their constitutional role.
BY DESMOND CHINGARANDE
Lawyer Chris Mhike, who is representing NewsDay Weekender reporter Blessed Mhlanga and his wife Florence, who were assaulted at ZBC studios by Finance deputy minister Terrence Mukupe, wrote to the police demanding action.
“We note that from the time our clients reported the matter of theft of phone a Samsung S7 edge, by the deputy minister on May 24, no action has been taken and besides accused being on known abode, the matter remains undealt with, instead the police have instituted action against our clients who are victims,” Mhike wrote to the officer in charge of law and order.
Mhike said the fact that the police were now after the victims and letting loose that actual perpetrator was a violation of the Constitution and abuse of power by the government minister.
“We, hereby, place it on record that as far as we read the situation in terms of the law, the treatment of our two clients as accused persons under present circumstances constitutes an abuse of power by the deputy minister and a violation of section 61 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe which provides for the freedom of expression and freedom of the media and also constitutes unfair and unjust application of the law in respect of our clients,” he wrote.
Mhike works with Media Institute of Southern Africa (Misa) Zimbabwe under the media defence fund created to support journalists who come under fire while discharging their duties.