Police grovel, beg ZLHR not to garnish account of officer who injured Chitungwiza resident

Spread This News

By Leopold Munhende, Chief Correspondent

THE Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) is begging Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) to stop efforts aimed at garnishing ZW$400,000 from a Chitungwiza officer’s salary.

The junior officer, only identified as Chafunga was together with Home Affairs Minister Kazembe Kazembe ordered by a court in 2021 to offset his victim Ednock Dube’s (46) debt after beating, embarrassing and torturing him at the height of Covid-19 lockdown.

With the funds yet to be disbursed to Dube, ZLHR had initiated processes to have them garnished by Salaries Services Bureau (SSB) from St. Mary’s stationed Chafunga’s salary.

ZLHR lawyer Tinashe Chinopfukutwa wrote a letter to police Commissioner General Godwin Matanga notifying him of his intention to apply in court for a garnishee order against Chafunga last year.

“When cornered to account for its officers’ misdemeanors, ZRP usually “sobers up,” they are currently pleading with us to stop processes meant to garnish money from the monthly salary of a police officer as a form of punishment for his misdemeanours after he severely assaulted a Chitungwiza resident, for allegedly violating curfew regulations,” said ZLHR Thursday.

“Chinopfukutwa wants the court to order the SSB, which processes government employees’ salaries, to garnish and deduct money from the monthly salary of Chafunga and to have it channelled to offset a debt which he owes to Dube.

“Chafunga together with Matanga and Kazembe were on 16 September 2022 ordered by Chitungwiza Magistrate Sheunesu Matova to pay ZW$400,000 in damages to Dube after holding them liable for the violation of the Chitungwiza resident’s fundamental rights.”

“The 46-year-old Dube sued Chafunga, Matanga and Kazembe in April 2021 as compensation for pain, suffering and humiliation after he was subjected to unlawful assault, torture, inhumane and degrading treatment at the hands of some ZRP officers who included Chafunga.”

Dube was arrested in 2021 while as he made his way home from work and accused of violating curfew regulations that limited movement of individuals.

He was taken to St. Mary’s police station, detained, handcuffed to a pole and assaulted on his hands and head.

He suffered injuries to his hands and head, affecting his eyesight in the process.

Added ZLHR: “In a letter addressed to Chinopfukutwa, a ZRP legal officer only identified as E. Hunyanyiwa, recently begged Dube to halt filing of an application in court to obtain a garnish order authorising the SSB to deduct money from Chafunga’s salary.

“Hunyanyiwa assured Chinopfukutwa that ZRP had initiated processes, which should lead to the full and final settlement of the ZW$400, 000 and is currently awaiting to obtain “treasury concurrence” from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) which should bring the matter to finality.”