HARARE: In a shocking move, a High Court Judge has ruled that Vice President Constantino Chiwenga ordered the deployment of soldiers who were involved in the August 1 post election killings that saw them shoot live ammunition on opposition protestors leaving six of them dead in Harare.
Justice David Mangota has absolved President Emmerson Mnangagwa of any involvement in the matter and instead saying General Chiwenga is the one who is fingered. Chiwenga was the Vice President in charge of the Ministry of Defense.
Handing down a judgement of the case Allison Charles and Counseling Services Unit versus President of the Republic of Zimbabwe and ten others Justice Mangota said, “The circumstances of the events of 1 August 2018 unfold themselves in a manner which is as clear as night follows day. They run in the following order:
1. A commotion started in the central business district of Harare
2. The officer who commands the district assessed the magnitude of the commotion as measured against the strength of the personnel which was then at his disposal,
3. He then approached the Minister under whose supervision he operates
4. The Minister , in turn, approached his counterpart in the Minister of defence
5. He in turn dispatched members of the defence forces who work under the command of the regulating of the district in Harare.
Because the President did not deploy, he is not conflicted as the applicants would have the court believe. He also did not violate Section 214 of the constitution. He, in other words, did not owe a duty to report to parliament matters which did not arise out of the power which the constitution confers upon him.
The Motlanthe Commission is yet to finish public hearings into the matter with the next hearings being scheduled for Mutare. At least 6 people did when soldiers used live bullets to disperse a protest by opposition supporters.