By Blessed Mhlanga | NewsDay |
MDC vice-chairman Job Sikhala, who was allegedly abducted from Harare Central Police Station after his arrest on charges of subverting a constitutionally-elected government, is now suing the police for acting unlawfully and unconstitutionally.
Sikhala, through his lawyers Koto and Company, has initiated a $3 million lawsuit against Home Affairs minister Cain Mathema, Police Commissioner-General Godwin Matanga and Superintendent Daniel Joseph of Harare Law and Order section.
“We write to you at the instance of our client (Sikhala) hereby providing you with notice of intention to institute legal proceedings against yourself, within 60 days from date of this letter as defined in terms of section 5 of the State Liabilities Act,” Sikhala’s lawyers wrote.
The lawyers said after Prosecutor-General Kumbirai Hodzi had granted his consent to have Sikhala appear before a Harare court, the police abducted him and locked his lawyers in police cells, thereby blocking them access to him.
“Despite the consent having been obtained, the police officers, including Superintendent Daniel Joseph, locked the team of lawyers who were in the company of our client, Tendai Biti and Innocent Gonese, inside cells of Harare Central (Police Station) and refused to give them access to our client, when Joseph dragged and smuggled our client out of Harare Central Police Station,” the lawyers said.
Sikhala alleged in his letter that he suffered insults, dehumanising treatment and a sense of shock from the actions of the police while he was blindfolded and suffering unbearable pain.
“Our client was tortured and experienced an aggravated and deliberate form of inhuman or degrading treatment. Severe pain, suffering both physically and mentally, was intentionally inflicted upon him. He was insulted and threatened, which diminished his human dignity and aroused feelings of fear, anguish or inferiority capable of breaking his morale,” the letter read.