ANTI-CORRUPTION minister Paul Mangwana has said it is wrong to arrest suspects to facilitate investigations as this damages the reputation of innocent people.
Mangwana, who was guest of honour at the Insurance Institute of Zimbab
we AGM in Nyanga on Monday last week, elected to differ with his colleagues in government and the central bank who two years ago initiated legislation to detain suspects in economic crimes cases to facilitate investigations.
Asked by Zimre CEO Leo Huvaya why government was in the habit of arresting and then investigating, Mangwana said the Anti-Corruption Commission which falls under his portfolio would investigate first.
“The Anti-Corruption Commission will investigate first before asking police to make arrests and take suspects to court,” said Mangwana. “The moment you take one to court, the nation tries you, convicts and sentences you to death. People’s good names have been damaged through illegal arrests.”
The controversial law extended the period of pre-trial detention without possibility of bail for certain serious offences such as corruption, money laundering, externalisation of foreign currency and unauthorised disposal and dealing in gold or precious stones from seven to 21 days.
Victims of this government legislation include former Finance Minister Chris Kuruneri who was arrested in 2004 over allegations of foreign currency externalisation and the possession of dual citizenship.
Prominent local businessman and politician, James Makamba was also arrested in 2004 on foreign currency externalisation charges. He has since fled the country. — Staff Writer.