Zvikomborero Parafini, Court Reporter
Suspended chief magistrate Mishrod Guvamombe’s application for recusal and referral to the High Court was dismissed yesterday and he will be tried by a regional magistrate.
Hwange regional magistrate Collet Ncube dismissed the application on the basis that it lacks merit as it doesn’t conform to the objective test of impartiality of the presiding magistrate.
Ncube said it would be breach of law to recuse himself on behalf of all magistrates in Zimbabwe, retired or serving as the application must have a well-founded grounds.
“I agree with both counsels that accused persons have rights to be tried by an impartial judicial officer and the bias must be reasonable but fairness should also be to the public represented by the State.
“The fact that judicial officers may be impartial shouldn’t be taken personal, there is no evidence that my appointment as regional magistrate was influenced by accused and defense agrees that it was on merit and no points were raised on my impartiality or partiality.
“It is the State which should be worried about the relationship between the court and applicant,” said Ncube.
The matter was remanded to April 17 for trial commencement.