Harare schoolteacher caught up in August 1 shootings sues army for over 400k

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By Robert Tapfumaneyi

A Harare schoolteacher has taken the Justice Minister and the army commander to court to pursue over $400 000 in terms of damages for injuries suffered when he got shot by soldiers during the August 1, 2018 post-election violence in Harare.

Loveday Munetsi was shot on the right buttock when government deployed armed soldiers to quell acts of civil disobedience among citizens angered by what they found to be a rigged July 31 national election by the Zanu PF led government.

Munetsi was taken to Parirenyatwa Hospital where a specialist surgeon examined him and noted that the bullet could not be removed as it was too deep.

Zimbabwe’s Defence minister and army commander are cited as 1st and 2nd respondents, respectively.

According to court papers, Munetsi is claiming ZWL$40,500 being special damages for hospital and medical expenses and other related expenses arising from the “reckless discharge and indiscriminate shooting” by a member of the ZNA.

“Payment of ZWL$102, 000 for future medical expenses and treatment of nerve injury including physiotherapy and pain medication, surgery and post-surgery treatment for removal of the bullet and therapy for trauma, anxiety and depression, all arising from the injury caused to the plaintiff from shooting,” the court papers read.

“Sum of ZWL$50 000 being damages for loss of income and payment of ZWL$ 200, 000 being damages for nervous shock, pain and suffering by the plaintiff as a result of the shooting which was highly traumatic given that he was an innocent passerby not expecting to be shot at indiscriminately by a soldier.”

Munetsi is also demanding ZWL$100,000 for permanent disfigurement, permanent disability and loss of amenities of life given that he has a permanent scar arising from the gunshot wound injury and suffers mobility problems and pain affecting his ability to enjoy and take part in everyday life.

He was hospitalised for several months and now has to attend regular medical reviews, which require further life threatening surgery and suffers ongoing pain, anxiety and depression.

Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) are representing him.