Thursday, September 16, 2021
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Wrongful arrest: Kurauone sues State for $2.4 million

 

Godfrey Kurauone


Upenyu Chaota

MDC
Alliance national youth organizing secretary Godfrey Kurauone, who spent 42 days in
remand prison on charges of criminal nuisance and obstructing free movement of traffic,
has filled a $2.4 million lawsuit against the State.

Kurauone, who is also Masvingo Urban Ward 4 councillor, intends to sue the Minister of Home Affairs Kazembe Kazembe, Commissioner
General of Police Godwin Matanga, Officer-in-Charge CID Law and Order Masvingo,
Detective Constable Muonde and the Prosecutor General Kumbirai Hodzi.

Detective Muonde and another CID officer Archibald Muyambi were the two State witnesses who claimed they saw Kurauone in Mashava blocking the road to Zvamahande on July 31.

Their testimony was, however, dismissed by Magistrate Patience Madondo before Kurauone was set free on September 10.

In the
notice of intention to sue, Kurauone, who is represented by Martin Mureri of
the Matutu and Mureri Legal Practitioners, argues his arrest and continuous
detention was arbitrary and without just cause.

“On the
31st day of July 2020, our client was arrested by the members of the
Zimbabwe Republic Police Law and Order Masvingo where he had gone for his bail
reporting condition. The arrest was without warrant.

“The
arrest was arbitrary and without just cause. His arrest and prosecution was
motivated by malice and improper motives.

“In the
premises, we are instructed to notify you, as we hereby do, in line with the
relevant statutory provisions that our clients intends to sue you jointly and
severally with all the police officers and other persons who participated in
his wrongful and malicious arrest and prosecution as well as the prosecutors
who acted on culpable ignorance and led the prosecution against our client,”
said Kurauone through his lawyer.

A sum
of $500 000 is being sought for damages on unlawful and wrongful arrest, $800
000 being damages for unlawful and wrongful detention, $800 000 being damages
for malicious prosecution and $300 000 being special damages in the form of
legal expenses incurred defending the ‘malicious’ allegations against Kurauone.

Kurauone, was detained at Masvingo Central Police
Station on July 31, 2020 and taken to court the following morning where he was
formally placed on remand on allegations of Criminal Nuisance as defined in
Section 46 of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act (Chapter 9:23).

He was
also charged with obstructing or endangering free movement of people or traffic
as defined in Section 38 (c) of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform)
Act  (Chapter 9:23).

Kurauone
applied for bail and was denied by the Magistrates Court on August 3, 2020. He
appealed to the Masvingo High Court and his appeal was dismissed on August 13,
2020.

On
September 01, the State withdrew the charge of criminal nuisance before plea
and on September 10, Kurauone was acquitted on the charge of obstructing and
endangering the free movement of people or traffic.

 

 

 

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