PG’s Office wants Tomana tried by a judge

ACTING Prosecutor General (PG) Advocate Ray Goba has proposed that suspended PG Johannes Tomana be tried by a High Court judge with prosecutorial background “to determine the criminality or otherwise of his conduct”, NewsDay can reveal.

Source: PG’s Office wants Tomana tried by a judge – NewsDay Zimbabwe October 10, 2016


Goba issued the instructions in a memorandum dated September 12, 2016 gleaned by this paper, while directing his subordinates to ensure Tomana was indicted to the High Court for trial.

This came shortly after Goba was quoted in some sections of the local media dismissing as unfounded reports that his office had made a decision to have Tomana tried at the High Court.

In his latest memorandum Goba said: “I have done a preliminary perusal of the crime docket. I have formed the opinion that the accused (Tomana) be tried before a judge of the High Court for the following reasons; the allegations/charge levelled against the accused are very serious as they arose in the line of duty.”

Goba further said given Tomana’s authority and position, it would be improper for him to be tried by a magistrate as opposed to “a judicial officer of comparable status”.

“The accused is the highest person in the authority with responsibility for prosecutorial decision-making and the management of the operations of the authority. By virtue of his position it is proper that he be tried by a judicial officer of comparable status,” he said.

“A judge of the High Court particularly one who has prosecution background will be best placed to understand the nature of the duties and powers vested in the PG and to determine the criminality or otherwise of his conduct. I therefore direct that you proceed to indict the accused for trial in the High Court as a matter of priority for this term.”

Contacted for comment, Tomana’s lawyer Tazorora Musarurwa said he was equally shocked when he read that Goba had denied knowledge that Tomana would be indicted for trial.

“Our understanding is that the State made a commitment in court that they will indict the PG for trial in the High Court during the first term of next year. I was surprised when I read in one of the papers that the acting PG had dismissed reports that his office had made such a decision,” Musarurwa said.

“However, if there is anything outside the court it has not been communicated to us or the court. In fact, the reason why we consented to the postponement and withdrew our application for further remand refusal was that the State had indicated it had draft indictments.”