Soldiers Arrested For Human Rights Violations After Protests- Justice Minister

In an interview with The Standard, Justice Minister Ziyambi Ziyambi said some soldiers were arrested for their role in human rights violations after the fuel protests in January this year.

Speaking to Xolisani Ncube (XN), Ziyambi (ZZ) denied reports that some military intelligence personnel were being shielded from prosecution. Below is an excerpt of the interview:

XN: So far, has any soldier been charged for their role in human rights violations post the January 14 protests?

ZZ: What I know is that indeed, yes, we have some who were arrested.

I was briefed by the commissioner-general of police that there were some prison officers who were among the demonstrators. We also have some military personnel who were also arrested, so indeed the arrests that were carried out were not discriminatory.

All those who were suspected to have been involved were accounted for.

What is pleasing is that all those who were arrested were subjected to due process of law.

XN: There have been reports of soldiers and members of the military intelligence being shielded from prosecution by the authorities. Does this mean they had the blessings of the government to commit the crimes? A quick example is the case of the Mbare shebeen robbery involving Military Intelligence Department and Central Intelligence Organisation operatives.

ZZ: The policy of government is that no one is above the law.

The president has been very clear that, in fact, if you look at our Transitional Stabilisation Programme and our Vision 2030, they are anchored on respect for the fundamental human rights and rule of law.

Government has no policy whatsoever to shield anyone who breaks the law. No one is above the law.

The president has indicated that anyone who is caught on the wrong side of the law must face the music.

We strongly believe that if there were complaints about certain individuals who were shielded, reports must be made and due process of ensuring justice prevails will be followed.

More: Standard

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