PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa has said he will make public the report by a commission of inquiry into the post-election violence that gripped Harare on August 1, in which members of the military allegedly shot and killed six civilians and injured over 20 others.
BY XOLISANI NCUBE
The commission was chaired by former South African President Kgalema Motlanthe.
Mnangagwa’s statement follows a public outcry after his spokesperson George Charamba claimed in the State-media that the report was for Mnangagwa’s “eyes only” and that its publication would be his prerogative.
“The hearings were done in public, so the report will be shared with the public,” Mnangagwa told heads of foreign missions in the country at a re-alignment workshop in Darwendale yesterday.
In a related matter, University of Zimbabwe law professor Lovemore Madhuku, who was part of the commission, said Mnangagwa was bound by his promise to make the report public.
“There is, in the law, room to be given to the President to read the report and thereafter to make it public. There is no law which says the President should make the report public immediately after being given,” Madhuku told a symposium to commemorate the International Human Rights Day, which was presided over by Justice minister Ziyambi Ziyambi.
“The procedure at law is that he receives the report; he studies it and then makes it public. As far as we are concerned, the report will be made public.”
Madhuku, who is also the president of the National Constitutional Assembly, an opposition party, said he accepted the offer to be part of the commission of inquiry despite having been at the receiving end of State-sponsored violence, with his motivation emanating from the experiences of former South African President Nelson Mandela.
He said during the hearings, he was baffled at how opposition leaders, while testifying consistently, reminded him of how the Zanu PF regime assaulted opposition players as he had moved on and decided to give peace-building efforts a chance.
“Yes, I know they would be elements in the new dispensation that are of the old order, but they are a new thing and we have to move and hold on to advantages that come with this. I can also give you an example of Mandela, 27 years in prison under that apartheid regime, but he still came out to work with the once oppressors,” Madhuku said.
“I have colleagues, who kept reminding me when I was in the commission; hours and hours ‘you were beaten’. Yes, we were beaten and so on. Up to this day, I don’t understand why I should not have been in the commission that seeks to ensure we end such acts.”