Monday, 7 April 2014

Mnangagwa quizzed over pardoned rapist

A Matobo man jailed for raping his 12-year-old niece was allegedly pardoned by President Robert Mugabe recently despite the fact that rapists were excluded from the amnesty.

The rapist identified as Jaison Gaba Dube is now allegedly threatening villagers with unspecified action for causing his arrest.

This first came to light during debate in the Senate last week when Matabeleland South senator Watchy Sibanda (MDC-T) asked Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs minister Emmerson Mnangagwa if rapists were covered under the amnesty.

"My question is, was your ministry involved when the president gave amnesty to prisoners?

"I am asking this question because, in my constituency, there was a man who raped his 12-year-old niece and now he is out in the communal lands.

"This is the reason why I am asking whether your ministry was involved.

"I am saddened because that is a girl child and this person is supposed to be incarcerated," Sibanda quizzed.

Mnangagwa quizzed over pardoned rapist
In response, Mnangagwa said people who committed rape and aggravated murder were exempted from benefiting from the amnesty and Mugabe does not initiate amnesty.

"It is the other way round, it is not the president who initiates the release of prisoners or granting amnesty, but where we need amnesty, that power is vested in the president in our Constitution.

"So, when we consider the necessity of granting amnesty to prisoners, we do so by application to His Excellency to exercise that constitutional power to grant amnesty.

"The amnesty which we granted resulted in over 3 000 prisoners being released, but we exempted two categories. One was those who committed rape, were exempted from benefiting from the amnesty and those who committed aggravated murder and robbery were not included in the 3 000 persons who benefited from the amnesty.

"Your particular individual, if it is true that he is out as a result of the recent amnesty, I would wish to get the details because even if you look at the Gazette, it specifically and clearly states that those who committed rape are exempted from benefiting from the amnesty" Mnangagwa said.

Yesterday, Sibanda told Southern Eye that he is related to Dube. He said the rape incident came to light after the girl fell pregnant.

Prisoners who committed murder, rape, treason, carjacking, armed robbery and stocktheft were excluded.
Southern Eye

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