HON. BITI: Hon. Speaker Sir, the situation is very grave. Even our own Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission – Chapter 12, the Commission in terms of our Constitution has issued a report that said there was systematic and systemic gross abuse of human rights. So, the question to the Hon. Minister says, is it now Government policy that the State itself becomes a rogue State?
THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, Order! I thought the Hon. Minister’s response was very clear. He says even the Human Rights Commission’s report, what is wanted are specific events which can be followed up by the State. That is what the Hon. Minister has said. So, those specific issues must be brought before the Government for investigation and anyone who has broken the law, be it a policeman or a soldier or any other person including a protester, this should be brought to the attention of the authorities so that specific investigations can take place. Where such a report has been given and no action has taken place as the Minister rightly pointed out, the High Court or the Constitutional Court for that matter, can be approached on an urgent basis to state that the authority has failed to look into those specific issues.
*HON. MUSABAYANA: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. What is Government policy regarding members of political organisations and political leaders or parties which incite violence?
THE HON. SPEAKER: Order, order! I will indulge the Hon. Member but the Hon. Minister has already answered that. Perhaps for emphasis, the Hon. Minister can repeat.
HON. ZIYAMBI: Thank you Mr. Speaker Sir. What has been happening is that our law enforcement agencies have been following up on the organisers so that they can be held accountable according to our laws. If you go to POSA, it allows the organisers to be held accountable even for civil liabilities for whatever would have been destroyed. So, indeed Government is going to do that this time around. We are very serious in following those people who believe that they can incite people to destroy other people’s properties or to incite people to kill each other. The law is going to take its course and definitely action will be seen to be done this time around. I thank you.
*HON. MPARIWA: This is a supplementary question to Hon. Biti’s question and I am directing this one to the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs. I am asking because of the following reasons. I am asking because in the high density areas, people are not allowed to move up to a certain time. You find people being driven out of social places like beer halls and night clubs. They are being driven to go home and be with their families and people are being denied access to their relatives who are in remand or in prison. We also have some Members of Parliament who are not in this House because some of them as soon as they are freed by the courts, they are quickly arrested before they can enjoy their freedom.
THE HON. SPEAKER: I do not see how your supplementary question connects with what Hon. Biti has said. You must connect your supplementary question to the original one. Can you rephrase it?
*HON. MPARIWA: Thank you Hon. Speaker, I will rephrase my question. My question is – do we have a state of emergency in the country which leads to the imposition of a curfew because people in high density areas are denied to be moving around after sometime in the evening? We also have some Hon. Members who were arrested and are on remand. They are not allowed to have a visitor which is against the law. What is Government policy?
*HON. ZIYAMBI: Mr. Speaker Sir, if you look at why there is this undeclared curfew, the reason was that these hooligans and looters were making people going about their business pay some passage fee because the roads had been barricaded and to get through that barricade you had to pay a certain amount. As a result, the Ministry of Home Affairs moved in swiftly so that people could move freely. The peace loving Zimbabweans were afraid to move at night because of these hooligans.
What is happening is that the Ministry of Home Affairs has said there should be police officers who will patrol these areas and protect innocent civilians from these hooligans and thugs who will be barricading the roads.