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Jonathan Moyo slams Motlanthe report

Former Higher Education Minister Professor Jonathan Moyo has slammed the Motlanthe report on the August 1 killings in Zimbabwe, describing it as “the worst published Report by a Commission of Inquiry since 1980.” The thread from his @ProfJNMoyo twitter account is reproduced below:

Higher Education Minister Jonathan Moyo
Former Higher Education Minister Jonathan Moyo

1/21 It’s notable that the Motlanthe Commission Report does not extricate the Commision from the antecedent toxicity, arising from its flawed composition & terms of reference, that exposed it upfront as a compromised ZanuPF PR scheme. In fact, the Report confirms these flaws!

2/21 The fact that the Commission did nothing to liberate itself from its founding prejudices, especially with regards to its flawed composition & terms of reference, means its Report cannot be expected to meet legitimate public expectations. Something never comes from nothing!

3/21 There’s something instructive from the old-age Shona adage that “rine manyanga hariputirwi”. This is particularly true where atrocities are involved. It is impossible to use a Commission or anything else for that matter, to hide or escape from gross crimes against humanity!

4/21 The smoke and mirrors in Motlanthe Commission’s Report cannot obfuscate the fact that everyone knows why the Commission was setup in the first place. On 1 Aug civilians were gunned down by soldiers & some were killed in cold blood & others brutally injured in broad daylight!

5/21 What happened was self-evident to the naked eye. What was not obvious & needed to be established for purposes of accountability was the identity, names, of the soldiers on rampage & crucially, the authority that deployed them with lethal ammunition in a civilian situation!

6/21 Mnangagwa publicly told the nation & the world that he did not know who deployed the soldiers; meaning that it was not him. That he did not know was the only reason why Zimbabweans & the international community demanded an independent international commission to investigate!

7/21 Notwithstanding the antics by Motlanthe’s Commission to dance naked in the dark with smoke & mirrors; and not withstanding its convulted terms of reference, only two key questions needed factual answers: (a) who are the soldiers that killed civilians & (b) who deployed them?

8/21 WHO DEPLOYED THE SOLDIERS? The Commission had no stomach to bluntly say it was MNANGAGWA. It confirms the fact by claiming the deployment “was lawful”, a matter of law for a court, and by attaching on page100 Obert Mpofu’s & Chiwenga’s letters which say it was Mnangagwa!

9/21 The finding that Mnangagwa deployed the soldiers is significant in two respects:

(a) Clearly Mnangagwa lied in August that he did not know who had deployed the soldiers. This is egregious.

(b) Responsibility & accountability for what the soldiers did is with Mnangagwa!


“The Commission’s finding on a balance of probabilities from all the evidence is that the deaths of six (6) people and the injuries sustained by thirty five (35) others arose from the actions of the Military and Police”.
P. 48 of Report!

11/21 Regarding the causes of death & injury of civilians on 1 Aug, the Report says on p. 40:

“The Commission has NOT RECEIVED ANY CONCRETE EVIDENCE THAT ANY PERSON other than the Army and Police used guns during the protests on 1 August 2018”.

This puts paid to Vanguard crap!

12/21 Whereas the Report clearly says the six civilians who died were killed by the Army or Police & the 35 civilians were injured by the Army, the Commission fails to name the soldiers & police officers who committed specific atrocities. This renders the Report a big cover up!

13/21 The Commission’s failure to name the culpable soldiers & police officers is a dereliction of duty against its mandate. Even worse is its recommendation that the Police should investigate the 1 August crimes & the Army should identify & sanction its culpable soldiers. Plz!

14/21 The Report says the Army or Police killed the six dead & the Army injured the 35 injured, & that no one else but the Army & Police used guns; & that Mnangagwa deployed the soldiers yet the Commission assigns no accountability to him, his VP, ministers, Army & Police bosses!

15/21 The Commission’s position that only soldiers & police officers should be held accountable after further investigations & that no political & legal accountability should attach to Mnangagwa, his VP, ministers, Army & Police bosses is contrary to domestic & international law!

16/21 The Commission belabours the point that it was a fact finding process, and not a court of law. Yet its Report makes findings of law, notably that the military deployment was lawful. The Commission had no basis or competence whatsoever to draw such a scandalous conclusion!

17/21 The Commission alleges that the 1 Aug demonstrations, which it acknowledges kicked off peacefully, “had been incited, pre-planned and well organized by the MDC-Alliance”. But the Report does not have any evidence that shows or proves any PRE-PLANNING by the MDC-Alliance!

18/21 “Pre-planning” means “organising in advance”. It is revealing that the only pre-planning about 1 Aug that is proved in the Report was done by the Army & the Police on 29 July BEFORE even voting started on 30 July. The Report’s Appendix 7 has police letters that prove this!

19/21 Nothing in the Report explains why the Police & Army were planning about 1 August protests on 29 July. All of their 1 August letters refer to 29 July. Is this not the smoking gun that points to who planned & orchestrated the 1 August protests? Why was this not investigated?

20/21 The Army & Policy pre-planning on 29 July is damaging given the Report’s finding that the Army deployment “COULD HAVE BEEN AVOIDED IF THE POLICE WERE ADEQUATELY EXPERIENCED, better equipped & more suitably organized”. This is damming. Why blame the MDC-Alliance for this!

21/21 The Report of the Motlanthe Commission is poorly written, badly reasoned & self-contradictory. It’s the worst published Report by a Commission of Inquiry since 1980. Its saving grace is that it puts paid to the lie that Mnangagwa did not know who deployed the Army on 1 Aug!