ZLHR seeks justice for police spikes victims

THE Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) have renewed their bid to seek justice for victims of a fatal road traffic accident after police ‘recklessly’ threw metal spikes in front of a speeding commuter omnibus early this year.

The incident which attracted public outcry took place in Mutare, on May 4 leading to a fatal road traffic accident, loss of four lives, with more than 10 people being hospitalised.

In a statement yesterday, ZLHR said they were demanding that the police officers be held accountable for the incident.

“ZLHR lawyers recently wrote a letter to provincial legal officer at ZRP Manicaland provincial headquarters protesting that they had not been informed on whether any ZRP traffic police officers have been charged with any offence and whether any internal disciplinary procedures have been instituted arising from their reckless conduct.”

The ZLHR further noted that the action by the police officers was not only unnecessary but reckless.

“They exposed innocent women, men and school children to serious harm and unnecessary loss of life. The conduct of ZRP officers, the human rights lawyers said, clearly violated the victims’ rights to human dignity and bodily integrity as defined in Sections 51  and 52 of the Constitution respectively and also violated the deceased persons’ right to life protected under Section 48 of the Constitution,” said ZLHR.

As if that is not enough, the human rights organisation said it was unfortunate that while despite the gravity of the matter their clients have neither been invited for interviews nor have any statements been recorded from them regarding the fatal road traffic accident.

“The clients want to be furnished with information regarding at which stage the ZRP’s purported investigations into the matter are at and the details of all traffic police officers who were at the scene of the accident.

“ZRP that it has a constitutional obligation in terms of section 219 of the Constitution to detect, investigate and prevent crime as well as to uphold the Constitution and to enforce the law without fear or favour,” said ZLHR.

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