A High court judge while rejecting an application to stop prosecution urged the courts to expedite trials for high profile cases as they have the potential to make the public question the judiciary and criminal justice system , The Herald reports.
Justice Tawanda Chitapi said this as he was dismissing an application for permanent stay of prosecution by former Minister of State for Midlands Provincial Affairs Jason Machaya, former Mashonaland West provincial administrator Cecilia Chitiyo, and six other senior Government employees.
Machaya and accomplices are facing charges of:
- Acting with a common purpose and unlawfully approving layout plans,
- Grabbing over 11 000 stands owned by the State through the Local Government Ministry
- Disposing of commonage stands
- Other related acts in ways contrary to Government policy.
In dismissing the application Justice Mutapi said;
In other words, if the application were granted, the charges die a natural death by order of permanent stay of proceedings or prosecution. It is accordingly ordered that the application be and it is hereby dismissed with no order of costs.
The suspects had argued that there was a lengthy and prejudicial delay between the dates of the alleged commission of the offence and the time of their arrest and prosecution according to the publication.
More: The Herald