Anarchy: Mnangagwa backs controversial spot-fines

HARARE – Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa says the issue of spot fines is an administrative process that was put in place for the convenience of the justice delivery system.

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Vice President Mnangagwa’s clarification follows the debate that dominated the media this week over spot fines.

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In an interview on the sidelines of a presentation at the Zimbabwe Staff College, Mnangagwa, who is also the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, said while the judge made his comment outside a court of law, what is important is whether the payment of spot fines is done in accordance with the law or not.

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He said the payment of spot fines was made to ease the administrative processes in the payment of the fines for travelling motorists.

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The Vice President said the government is worried about the abuse of authority by some police officers who are demanding bribes saying it requires the participation of all stakeholders to curb the vice.

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In his presentation to the officers attending the Joint Command and Staff Course Number 28 at the Zimbabwe Staff College, Mnangagwa said corruption and fraudulent activities are derailing efforts in achieving goals set out in the new constitution.

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The establishment of independent commissions such as the Anti-Corruption Commission and the National Prosecuting Authority were deliberate efforts by the country to allow independence in the prosecution of cases.

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Meanwhile, the re-alignment of all laws to the country’s constitution has been given the status of most priority by government as it moves to uphold and develop an efficient justice delivery system.

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Mnangagwa made the revelations while presenting a paper on the constitution of Zimbabwe at the Zimbabwe Staff College.

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Though Zimbabwe is committed to re-aligning all laws with the country’s supreme law, lack of funding has compromised this critical process.

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Mnangagwa says the re-alignment of laws involves a number of processes that require funding.

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“Government stands ready to play its part in all efforts that will see all laws aligned with the new constitution. The interest in the alignment of these laws is inherent since my ministry’s mission is to uphold, develop and provide accessible, efficient and effective justice.

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“Therefore government is cognisant of the fact that it can hardly provide justice with outdated pieces of legislation,” said Mnangagwa.

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Mnangagwa revealed that the recruitment freeze caused by lack of financial resources has impacted negatively on the re-alignment of laws.

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Zimbabwe’s supreme law was passed in 2013 replacing the 1979 Lancaster House Constitution.

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However, over 400 pieces of legislation are yet to be re-aligned to the new constitution.