Commissions Watch 27th Nov 2018 [Commission of Inquiry into Post-Election Violence of 1st August]

COMMISSIONS WATCH
27th November 2018
Commission of Inquiry into Post-Election Violence of 1st August
Veritas notes that when giving evidence before the Commission of Inquiry into
Post-Election Violence of 1st August, our Attorney-General, Prince Machaya,
was absolutely clear on the correct legal position of who can deploy the army
onto the streets. He is reported as having said:
"The Minister of Defence will always be aware of the provisions of the
Constitution, which stipulate how the deployment of the army is carried out,
so there is not likely to be any confusion in his mind as to the nature of the
authority that is required, which is that only the President can deploy the
army."
Veritas made written submissions to the Commission to this effect – see below,
but as we did not receive any acknowledgement whatsoever of our submission,
although it was delivered by hand to the Commission’s offices, we have no way
of telling whether it was seen by the Chairperson of the Commission or by any of
the Commissioners. We have consulted other organisations who submitted
written submissions and we find that they entertain the same doubts: in absence
of acknowledgement they are uncertain if their submission have reached the
Chairperson. We would have expected the Commission to follow a procedure of
acknowledging submissions.
Most regrettably the Commission has never made its procedures public – only its
terms of reference. This major omission has led to unfortunate results – such as
some members of the public feeling harried by questions that did not seem to be
related to their testimony about the shooting – e.g. being asked what political
party they belonged to. Under our Commissions of Inquiry Act everyone who
appears before such a commission is entitled to legal representation. It seems
that this Commission has not given out this information.

Veritas Submission to the Commission of Inquiry

FIRINNE TRUST
25 Canterbury Road, Avondale, Harare, Zimbabwe. Tel: 794478/706292 Fax & Messages 793592
Email: veritas@mango.zw Website: www.veritaszim.net

22nd October, 2018
The Chairman,
Commission of Inquiry into Post-Election Violence,
Cresta Lodge, Harare,
Cnr Samora Machel Avenue and Robert Mugabe Road,

Select target paragraph3