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All Rusape magistrates, staff transferred as corruption deepens

Shingirai
Vambe

RUSAPE

The Judicial Services Commission (JSC) has with immediate effect transferred all
Rusape magistrates, clerks of court and court interpreters to other regions and
provinces as perceptions of corruption in the judiciary rise, TellZim News can
reveal.
In emailed responses to
questions, acting chief magistrate Munamato Mutevedzi said the move was part of
usual strategies used elsewhere where suspicions of corruption had been raised.
“The Commission has previously
used the same intervention to good effect in other places such as Beitbridge
where red flags had been raised in 2016. Other stakeholders in the
administration of justice have also acknowledged the strategy’s effectiveness
and resorted to it. There is no gainsaying the adage that familiarity breeds
contempt.
“These transfers are in
accordance with the JSC Regulations, 2015 and its strategic priorities as set out
in section 12 of part 4.4 of the Commission’s Strategic Plan 2016-2020. That
strategic focus area mandates the Commission to participate in the formulation
and implementation of sector-wide interventions to enhance integrity of the
administration of justice,” he said.
Mutevedzi is acting on
behalf of Chief Magistrate Mishrod Guvamombe who is facing multiple criminal
abuse of office charges.
Mutevedzi also said one
clerk of court has been arrested for allegedly tempering with court records.
The clerk, who has
since been identified as Brit Zambara, allegedly removed pages from book numbers
R436 to 455/13 including records of an accused person in order to cover up an
offence.
“There is no evidence
of members of staff engaging in widespread underhand dealings at the station.
We have however received complaints and noted some systems inadequacies during
routine monitoring and evaluation visits to Rusape. It then became necessary to
realign operations at the station.
“In an isolated incident which is
already in the public domain, a clerk of court was arrested on allegations of
tampering with court records. The veracity of those allegations can only be
proved in a court of law,” Mutevedzi said.
In his televised interview TV
interview ahead of this year’s Independence Day, President Emmerson Mnangagwa
said corruption in the country ran ‘deep and wide’.

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