14 March 2017

Zimbabwe: MDC-T Cop Murder Convicts Let Down By Lawyers' Shoddy Work

ATTEMPTS by jailed MDC-T activists, Tungamirai Madzokere, Yvonne Musarurwa, Last Maengahama and Phenias Nhatarikwa to appeal against their conviction and sentence hit a snag Tuesday after the courts ruled the application was invalid.

Supreme Court judge, Justice Chinembiri Bhunu, trashed the application saying activists' lawyers failed to observe basic rules of the courts.

They four were represented by human rights lawyers Charles Kwaramba and Gift Mthisi.

Justice Bhunu said the record filed by the lawyers was in shambles as it had other irrelevant documents relating to arbitration which had nothing to do with the case.

State prosecutor Edmore Nyazamba had challenged the application arguing that it did not conform with court rules which require such an application to be made immediately after within 12 days of sentence.

Queried by the judge, Kwaramba said argued that it was the substance which mattered not the nature and form of the application.

Justice Bhunu said there needed to be closure to the case before finding that there was no proper application before the court and removing the case from the roll.

Madzokere, Musarurwa and Maengahama are serving 20 years for murder of the late ZRP Assistant Inspector Petros Mutedza who was killed five years ago.

Nhatarikwa was fined $500 and given a three-year suspended sentence for his role as an accessory to the murder.

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