The Prosecutor General, Kumbirai Hodzi has assured Prosecutors that there shall be no more arrests to prosecutors during the course of duty. The prosecutors were protesting in Harare on Thursday (today) after a prosecutor, Tapiwa Kasema was arrested for consenting to the release of former finance minister Ignatius Chombo’s passport.
Kasema was charged with criminal abuse of office and released on $150 bail by Harare provincial magistrate, Vongai Muchuchuti. In protest, his colleagues stopped working arguing that prosecutors were not being protected from the decisions they make whilst in the course of duty.
The Prosecutors Association of Zimbabwe handed Hodzi a protest letter in which they said:
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If anything, they are being prosecuted for exercising their legal minds. Before a prosecutor is arrested, internal remedies must be exhausted first before criminal allegations are laid on the prosecutors. Prosecutors must be protected by the NPA from intimidation by any powers that maybe
They also complained of interference in their work by the Special Anti-Corruption Unit recently established by President Emmerson Mnangagwa. They said that the intrusion was an abuse of office.
The protest prompted Prosecutor General Kumbirai Hodzi to give them assurances in writing. In a circular to the prosecutors, the PG said:
The PG assures all prosecutors who are carrying pout their duties professionally and with integrity that no prosecutor will be arrested during the course of duty without the written consent of the PG or the national director of public prosecutions.