The widow of a Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) senior official, Peter Munetsi who died while in military detention during the November 2017 ‘Operation Restore Legacy’, is demanding her late husband’s post-mortem report in addition to US$600 000.
In an application which she filed at the High Court on Wednesday, Rossie cited Commissioner-General of Police Godwin Matanga, Home Affairs and Culture minister Cain Mathema, Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals and pathologist Tsungai Jabangwe as the first, second, third and fourth respondents respectively.
She is being represented by Denford Halimani of Wintertons Legal Practitioners. Part of her application reads:
On 1 October 2018, the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) wrote another letter to the third respondent (Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals) advising them of our intention to meet the Officer-in-Charge of the Parirenyatwa Police Post in relation to the post-mortem report.
The meeting took place as scheduled and my legal practitioners managed to go through the post-mortem report.
The post-mortem revealed that my husband’s death was caused by intramuscular bleeding and blunt force trauma as a result of an assault.
Regrettably, the investigating officer was not able to attend the meeting and hence the report was not actually collected from the police post.
I require the post-mortem report so as to ascertain the official cause of my husband’s death and to forward the report to insurers who require it as a pre-condition to redeem my late husband’s EcoSure funeral insurance policy.
I also require it as evidence in the civil claim that I intend to institute against the wrong-doers. Thus I require the post-mortem report for the exercise or protection of a right as contemplated in Section 62(2) of the constitution.
Rossie said that the Defence Ministry denied culpability in the death of the then 55-year-old officer, claiming that he died from chronic illness. She further stated:
Due to the circumstances surrounding my husband’s death, his employers have made it clear that will only act upon receipt of his post-mortem report as they said that the matter was ‘sensitive’.
Munetsi died on November 15, 2017, while being detained by soldiers at the height of the coup that forced the then President Rober Mugabe to step down.