By Fidelis Munyoro
A Harare man pushing for the prosecution of Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development Minister Professor Jonathan Moyo for allegedly abusing public funds, says nothing stands in the way of the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc) from bringing the minister to court.
Mr Hardlife Mudzingwa, who approached the High Court seeking to compel police to arrest Prof Moyo, yesterday sought an amendment to his provisional order. He now wants Zacc compelled to bring Prof Moyo before a court of law.This emerged during a brief hearing of his urgent chamber application before Justice Loice Matanda-Moyo.
The anti-corruption body is on record saying it has a complete docket of the case.Justice Matanda-Moyo, however, deferred the hearing to October 25 to allow Prof Moyo to file his opposing papers. Both parties’ counsels confirmed the latest development.
“The judge postponed the matter to allow Prof Moyo to file his papers,” said Advocate Sylvester Munyaradzi Hashiti, instructed by Mr Simon Mupindu of Mupindu Legal Practitioners, acting for Mr Mudzingwa.
“She also wants Zacc to respond to the amended provisional order. We are saying nothing can stop Zacc from proceeding with the matter against Minister Moyo if the investigations are complete and thorough as they claim.”
Prof Moyo’s lawyer Advocate Lewis Uriri, instructed by Mr Terrence Hussein of Hussein, Ranchhod and Company, said he protested the delay in serving his client with both the application and notice of set down.
“Our client was only served with the papers shortly before the hearing of the matter in the afternoon.
“We also protested the fact that the application and its imminent date of hearing was already public knowledge since the media had written and published it before our client was served.”
Mr Mudzingwa’s lawyers amended the order after the Acting Police Commissioner-General Josephine Shambare said they had not arrested Prof Moyo because no report was made to that effect.
Deputy Commissioner-General Shambare said this in response to Mr Mudzingwa’s application seeking to compel the police to arrest the minister and cause his prosecution.
She stated in her founding affidavit filed in the High Court on Monday that the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act (Chapter 9:07) sets out the parameters within which police perform their duties.
Zacc, she said, was empowered by the Constitution to direct police to investigate cases of suspected corruption or to require assistance from the police service.
The Acting Police Chief also stated that Mr Mudzingwa did not allege nor prove that police was directed to investigate (Prof Moyo and refused.She further stated that the anti-corruption body could at law refer matters to the National Prosecuting Authority for prosecution.
Mr Mudzingwa, she said, has failed to prove that police refused to perform its duty and that there was no other sufficient legal remedy. She would urge the court to throw out Mr Mudzingwa’s case.
“It is clear that this application was manifestly ill-conceived and is nothing but an abuse of court process,” she said.
In his application, Mr Mudzingwa is also seeking an order for the executive to distance itself from Prof Moyo’s prosecution. He said it was his constitutional right as a Zimbabwean citizen to have Minister Moyo “brought before equity”
Prof Moyo, he said, should be given the chance to prove that he is a true Robin Hood and that the law allows him to abuse public funds arguing he cannot plead his cause, before Cabinet, the Politburo or on Twitter.
Mr Mudzingwa attacked Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko’s statement that Prof Moyo could not be arrested without President Mugabe’s consent as wrong and unacceptable at law.
The VP’s conduct, he said, gave the impression that the constitutional ideals underpinning the establishment of Zacc were not high on the State’s agenda. To support his case his case, Mr Mudzingwa cited various sections of the Constitution. The Herald