Story by ZBC Reporter
ATTEMPTS by the opposition to discredit the country’s justice system and the executive have once again proved to be futile. As part of the regime change agenda, a plot to maintain negative attention on the country, the opposition pushes several narratives that include allegations of human rights abuses, fake abductions, and other misinformation and lies.
One chief target of the opposition has been the justice system. Zimbabwe’s justice system comprises institutions that are central to resolving conflicts through the administration and enforcement of the law. These institutions include the Ministry of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs and its various departments. courts of law and the Judicial Service Commission.
The opposition claims that the country’s justice system is used by the executive to persecute rivals, that the country’s justice system is partisan in the conduct of its duties and that there is selective application of the law. These allegations are used as excuses to explain away the failures of opposition lawyers in the courts. They are also used to divert attention from the criminal activities of opposition members and supporters.
In short, the opposition has adopted ‘Lawfare’ to unseat the ruling party after all other methods including sanctions and demonstrations have failed to catapult them to power.
President Mnangagwa has directed that under the Second Republic, there would be no sacred cows and that every case would be investigated and punished in accordance with the dictates of our laws.
Unfortunately, the overzealous and ignorant opposition which has no real understanding of the justice delivery process failed to appreciate this and instead chose to disparage it through the mocking statement ‘catch and release’.
However, once again, the opposition has been left with egg on its face, as the country’s justice system has finalised several high profile cases. As the saying goes, the long arm of the law always catches its target.
It would be too much to expect the opposition to comprehend this as issues to do with the law, constitution, bureaucracy are foreign notions which is why the CCC is run like an undesignated vending site.
Some of the cases that prove that indeed there are no sacred cows when it comes to the delivery of justice include that of Paddington Japajapa, who in the recent elections was heralded as a returnee to ZANU PF. Japaja was last month handed a two-year sentence after being convicted for inciting public violence just after the August 2018 elections. Despite his return to ZANU PF, the party did not use its influence to ‘shield’ him from prosecution, because it respects the laws of the land.
Zimbabwe Miners Federation president Henrietta Rushwaya has been convicted and handed a wholly suspended 18 months jail term, fined USD$5 000 and the gold was forfeited to the state. She was convicted on charges of attempting to smuggle 6kg of gold worth more than US$ 333,000 to Dubai three years ago.
Several opposition leaders and their Western allies had been using her case to substantiate their claims that any person with strong links to ZANU PF was treated as above the law.
As the fight against corruption heats up, former Deputy Minister of Finance and Economic Development and ZANU PF Central Committee member, Terrence Mukupe was this week sentenced to three years in jail for importing more than 138 000 litres of diesel without paying duty. He was also fined US$ 2,780 with the risk of serving two more years if he fails to pay.
The opposition turns a blind eye on all these milestones, instead, they don’t mention them, if they do they will complain about the sentence as inappropriate.
Under these circumstances, the government has no choice but to ignore the opposition forces and continue with building the country.
Over the years, several opposition stalwarts in the CCC and in the Western-funded civil society have been accused of pilfering donor funds and engaging in violence as part of internal fights. However, none of these individuals have ever been brought before disciplinary hearings nor have the cases been reported to the police. These crimes are always swept under the carpet.
For the opposition, the concept of the rule of law is only applicable to rivals and opponents.