Tomana scurries to avoid jail, complies with court order

By: 
Staff Reproter

PROSECUTOR General (PG) Tomana, on Thursday, issued certificates for the private for the private prosecution of three cases he had refused to handle, in the process avoiding a spell in jail.

Constitutional Court judges, last week, ordered Tomana to issue the certificates within ten days, failing which he would be caged for 30 days and barred from practicing.

The PG was away on Russia on State business when the top court issued the ruling.

Tomana had refused to prosecute businesswoman Jane Mutasa on charges of defrauding Telecel Zimbabwe as well as the rape allegations against Zanu PF legislator Munyaradzi Kereke.

The other case involved businessman Vivek Solanki over allegations of swindling African Medical Investments.

Tomana’s office refused to prosecute the cases supposedly because the charges were weak but then refused to allow private prosecution whereby complainants can cause a trial using existing court structures except the prosecutor, who should be a private individual.

This resulted in the complainants in the three cases approaching the courts for relief which was granted only for Tomana to defy the rulings.

Observers said Tomana’s defiance was due to concern by the Zanu PF administration that allowing private prosecution on these cases could set a precedent that could open a floodgate.

Opposition parties were expected to also pursue private prosecution of cases of violence against their supporters which Tomana refused to pursue amid fears the sensitive Gukurahundi atrocities could also be brought up by the same route.

Fearing arrest, Tomana relented Thursday and issued the certificates through National director of public prosecutions Florence Ziyambi.

Commenting on the development, the victim’s layer in the Kereke rape case said: “It is a welcome development although it came a bit late.

“Our desire is that jurisprudence must not be delayed, which may amount to denying it. We are hoping that we will get justice in this case.”

Telcel Zimbabwe’s attorney, Isaiah Mureriwa welcomed the development.

“I confirm that we have received the certificate. It is now up to my client as to what they will do with it.

“What is important to me as the chief architect of this concept and argument is that I have set the jurisprudence correct.

“Individuals complying with the statutory requirements can now prosecute those who offend against them on their own irrespective that the State decides not to prosecute.”

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