24 April 2018
THERE is need to set up special courts throughout the country to speedily deal with politically motivated crimes ahead of the 2018 Harmonised elections, a senior cop has said.
Addressing journalists at Police General Headquarters yesterday, Senior Assistant Commissioner Erasmus Makodza urged political parties to desist from violence.
“All political parties and their members must desist from engaging in political violence as they hold primary elections during harmonised elections.
“Let me reiterate that anyone who engages in any form of political violence will certainly face full wrath of the law.
“Any form of violence, threats, or harassment of voters or rival contenders will certainly be dealt with in terms of the country’s law,” said Snr Ass-Comm Makodza.
He said that adequate security provisions have been put in place by the police to ensure primary and harmonised elections are held in a peaceful environment.
“Commissioner General of Police has set up teams of experienced investigators in provinces to expedite the investigation and compilation of dockets for prosecution, this is in line with section 133H of the Electoral Act, Chapter 2:13,” he added.
The Zimbabwe Republic Police has engaged political parties, Zimbabwe Electoral Commission, Zimbabwe Human Rights and other stake holders to ensure an environment which is conducive for holding of peaceful, credible, and violence-free elections is maintained.
Snr Ass-Comm Makodza mentioned some of the intimidatory practices which are prohibited under the Electoral Act which will not be tolerated.
“Inflicting or threatening to inflict bodily injury upon a person will not be tolerated, abducting a person or detaining a person against his or her will, causing or threatening to cause unlawful damage to a person’s property will not be tolerated either.
“Illegally doing or threatening to do anything to the disadvantage of a person will not be tolerated and also compelling or attempting to compel a person or persons generally to attend or participate in any political event,” he said
The public is urged to report to ZRP if any of these happen to them during elections.
“We also urge the media to continue to report objectively and factually during these plebiscites and let us all avoid peddling hate speech and falsehoods,” he added.