Machete wielding gangs to get punitive sentences

By ZBC Reporter
Bulawayo High Court judge, Justice Martin Makonese has assured Zimbabweans that machete wielding gangs terrorising communities in various parts of the country will face the full wrath of the law.
Justice Makonese was speaking at the officially opening of the Gweru High court circuit which coincides with the beginning of the 2020 legal year.
“There has been a relentless surge in youth gangs going on the rampage in all provinces of the country attacking and injuring people. In all this, these criminal elements have resorted to the use of deadly machetes, axes, shovels, knives and other dangerous weapons……Let it be known that we as the judiciary will hand down stiff penalties where appropriate on any persons convicted of these heinous crimes…..whilst these attacks are prominent amongst artisanal and small scale miners, ordinary criminals have now adopted similar style and tactics and use brute force to rob, injure and kill innocent civilians. The time has come to end this menace,” he warned.
He also called for the establishment of a permanent high court in Midlands province to clear the backlog at the Gweru High court circuit.
“The number of cases, handled at this circuit clearly indicates that the administration of justice requires that a permanent high court be established in order to deliver speedy and efficient justice to all in this vast province. We urge the Government and the Judicial Service Commission to commit to this important project… Courts must be easily accessed,” he added.
The Gweru High Court circuit dealt with 46 cases of which 34 were completed while 12 were still pending at the end of the 2019 legal year.
During the current circuit, the Gweru High Court is expected to deal with 16 cases which are ready for trial.