‘Madhuku must apologise to his students for misrepresenting law facts’
Opposition Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) Vice President Tendai Biti has urged constitutional law Professor Lovemore Madhuku to apologise to law students he taught for his recent remarks where he claimed CCC leaders needed to negotiate with Zanu-PF in order to end the ‘unjust’ incarceration of opposition MPs Job Sikhala, Godfrey Sithole and 16 residents of Nyatsime.
Madhuku on Tuesday suggested that political negotiations were the only realistic route for securing the freedom of the opposition officials.
The CCC members have seemingly failed to secure release on bail with several applications dismissed by the courts.
Addressing journalists at the Harare Magistrates Court on Friday morning, Biti slammed Madhuku saying his sentiments were against how the law worked. He urged the University of Zimbabwe lecturer to apologise to all students who came through his hands.
“I think Professor Madhuku must apologise to all the law students that have gone through his hands,” Biti said.
“The law was created for redress and bail is redress. For a lawyer to suggest that there must be political redress of a legal problem, it’s strange.
“If he was to make a case that there should be political dialogue among major political actors, in particular Champion in Chief President Nelson Chamisa and Mr Emmerson Mnangagwa, that argument and debate should be made separate from the legal discourse pertaining the bail applications of Job Sikhala, Godfrey Sithole and the 16 members of Nyatsime.”
Biti further clarified that the jailed 16 residents of Nyatsime did not participate in alleged “political violence” but were drivers who transported people to the funeral.
The opposition members have so far spent 89 days in jail. They were arrested on June 14 and charged with incitement to commit public violence to avenge the murder of party activist Moreblessing Ali.
“Today is exactly 89th day that Job Sikhala, Godfrey Sithole and the 16 members of Nyatsime community have been detained. We find this atrocious. Some of the citizens who are residents are people who were in fact hired to transport people to a funeral.
“So, the injustice can never be more clear. We object to the weaponisation of the law. We object to the unjust use of the law,” Biti added.
CCC spokesperson Fadzayi Mahere also challenged his former lecturer.
She asked: “But Prof Madhuku, is this the Constitutional Law that you taught us? Does the presumption of innocence fall away because one is CCC?
“What remains of the rule of law if bail is obtained by ‘political negotiation’ whatever that means? Is demanding constitutionalism ‘arrogant’?” Mahere queried.