We've no arresting powers: Zacc

We’ve no arresting powers: Zacc

Source: We’ve no arresting powers: Zacc – DailyNews Live

Tendai Kamhungira      7 February 2017

HARARE – The Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc) has admitted to
the Constitutional Court (Con-Court) that it has no arresting powers under
the Constitution.

In its heads of argument in a matter in which Zacc is being sued by Higher
and Tertiary Education minister Jonathan Moyo – who is facing allegations
of siphoning over $400 000 from the Zimbabwe Manpower Development Fund
(Zimdef) – Zacc said indeed it does not have powers to arrest suspects but
has police officers seconded to the organisation that have arresting
powers, who include Munyaradzi Chacha, who was handling the minister’s
fraud case.

Moyo’s application will be heard tomorrow before the full Con-Court bench
comprising nine judges.

Moyo was briefly arrested by Zacc last year with a view to take him to
court to answer to the charges, after he presented himself to the
anti-corruption body.

Chief Justice Godfrey Chidyausiku suspended Moyo’s arrest.

In the application, Moyo questioned the constitutionality of his arrest by
Zacc and the role played by the police.

He argued that Zacc does not have the power to arrest and detain suspects
in terms of the Constitution.

Moyo further said that the prosecutor general does not, in terms of the
Constitution, have the power to order the police to arrest an individual.

In its heads of argument, Zacc admitted: “The second respondent (Zacc) has
never averred that they have arresting powers. Section 13 of the
Anti-Corruption Commission Act spells out the powers of the second
respondent.”

“It is clear from the Act that it does not expressly confer powers of
arrest on the second respondent.

In addition, Section 255 of the Constitution confines the second
respondent’s powers to receiving complaints, investigating, combating,
exposing and directing the commissioner general to investigate cases of
suspected corruption and referring matters to the National Prosecuting
Authority.”

Zacc, however, argued that Moyo’s detention was lawful as it was within
the parameters of the organisation’s investigating powers, adding that
Chacha has arresting powers as a police officer.

“Thus, whilst on secondment, the first respondent (Chacha) `assists’ the
second respondent by carrying out those duties that he would normally
carry out in the Zimbabwe Republic Police.

“Thus, he remains a police officer who is assisting the second respondent
carry out those duties that the Anti-Corruption Commission Act has not
empowered the second respondent to do,” Zacc said, praying for the
dismissal of Moyo’s application on the basis that none of his rights were
violated.

Moyo has denied committing any offence, arguing that the allegations are
politically-motivated.

He accused Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa of plotting the allegations
through Zacc.

Moyo is facing the allegations together with his deputy Godfrey Gandawa,
who has also won a Con-Court referral.

Gandawa is also challenging Zacc’s powers to arrest and detain. He argued
that his constitutional rights were infringed by the organisations’
failure to warn and caution him of the charges he faced.

He further argued that the prosecutor general acted unconstitutionally by
recommending the commissioner general of police to arrest him, adding that
a warrant of search and seizure issued by Zacc was unlawful.

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COMMENTS

WORDPRESS: 1
  • comment-avatar
    Joe Cool 8 months

    So, why don’t the police just arrest them and/or get on with investigations, instead of having nine judges scratching their heads about who can and who cannot arrest. This country is the laughing stock of the entire world by now.