Justice Minister believes Sikhala and others deserve jail without trial
President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s administration is clear that it believes opposition Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) MPs Job Sikhala and Godfrey Sithole and the 11 Nyatsime residents deserve to be jailed even before they are found guilty.
CCC MP for Kambuzuma Willias Madzimure, on Wednesday asked the leader of government business in Parliament, Ziyambi Ziyambi why the courts were keeping on denying Sikhala, Sithole and the other activists bail when they are yet to be tried.
Today marks 106 days since the accused where detained over allegations of inciting public violence at the funeral wake of murdered CCC activist Moreblessing Ali. They were arrested on June 14.
“My question goes to the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs. We are seeing that our remand prisons are overcrowded. There is now a trend in this country where people are denied bail at the courts of law.
“It seems there is selective application of the law. Others are being arrested and let go but others are failing to secure bail. Those who are released even tell the police officers to say, we will meet at the courts,” Madzimure asked.
“Others are denied such an opportunity. There are people who have more than 100 days in remand prison. However, if you look at their cases, they are just the same as those who have been released in 24 hours. Why are we experiencing a selective application of the law?
“Why are people looking and considering political affiliation for those who are brought before the courts of law? The issues of Hon. Godfrey Sithole, Hon. Job Sikhala have more than 100 days in prison, in incarceration.
“Why are they being denied an opportunity just like those who have been granted bail in 48 hours?” Madzimure said.
In response, Ziyambi Ziyambi who is also the Minister of Justice and Parliamentary Affairs, claimed the activists had breached some bail conditions hence they deserved to be incarcerated without trial.
“I would like to make it clear that we do not segregate before the courts of law. There is no discrimination and there is no selective application of the law,” Ziyambi said.
“Secondly, we are expected to consider a court case as it is. Those people who have been mentioned had their own stories before. They were even given a bail before and they were told and instructed not to commit a crime as part of their bail conditions.
“One of the things was they were asked to move away from social media and to avoid certain language. When they went out, they repeated the very same things they were told not to do. If you do anything against the law of justice, surely you will be brought back. That bail is therefore evoked.
“One of the things is that you will not experience what you expect when you go against your bail conditions,” Ziyambi added.