Torture case reaches top SA court

via Torture case reaches top SA court | The Zimbabwean 30.10.13

The South African Supreme Court of Appeal will on Friday this week hear arguments in the landmark Zimbabwe torture case, which was brought by the Southern Africa Litigation Centre and the Zimbabwean Exiles Forum to compel South Africa to abide by its domestic and international legal obligations to investigate and prosecute high level Zimbabwean officials accused of crimes against humanity.

“The earlier High Court ruling in this case was very clear – the South African authorities have a legal duty to investigate allegations of torture against senior Zimbabwean officials,” said Angela Mudukuti, SALC’s international criminal justice project lawyer. “The Supreme Court of Appeal has the opportunity to reinforce that decision and ensure that perpetrators of these terrible crimes do not find sanctuary in South Africa – and are held accountable for their actions.”

In May 2012, the North Gauteng High Court ruled in favour of SALC and ZEF and set aside the decision of the National Prosecuting Authority and the South African Police Services) not to initiate an investigation into state-sanctioned torture in Zimbabwe, following a police raid on the headquarters of the Movement for Democratic Change in 2007.

Judge Hans Fabricius held that the South African authorities had not acted in accordance with their obligations under the domestic legislation and ruled that the decision had been taken unlawfully and unconstitutionally.

The NPA and SAPS petitioned the Supreme Court of Appeal after the High Court refused leave to appeal.



  • comment-avatar
    Nyoni 9 years ago

    The investigation of torture by a South African court will mean nothing to Mugabe at this juncture. The brutality meted out upon the brave people of Zimbabwe can not be explained any more either than a hearing in the ICC . The numerous witnesses in and out of Zimbabwe can and should testify against those in power now. Given that most of the attention is given to the plight of Syria at the moment, the world has forgotten our situation. Attention to this situation must be harnessed by the so called Opposition parties to force some sort of legal precedant to bear upon this brutal regime.

  • comment-avatar
    spiralx 9 years ago

    I think very little means anything to Mugabe, because of his self-willed refusal to see anyone’s else’s point of view. At his age, that’s fairly common, too.

    I don’t think that makes this court case meaningless – far from it. This is a historical choice that is not just about Mugabe, and it needs an answer, both to set the record straight, and to hopefully discourage further ‘history’ of this kind from taking place.

    And no, Zimbabwe has never been forgotten. Don’t mistake the media spotlight, forever moving on, from the longer-term work and activity going on, in all sorts of ways.