Do Not Use Courts To Persecute Govt Critics: Chin’ono
Incarcerated journalist, Hopewell Chin’ono has castigated what he described as abuse of courts by the state to target alleged critics of political elites within the ruling party.
In a media statement written today, Chin’ono accused the courts of double standards saying former health Minister Dr. Obadiah Moyo had his bail application granted yet he is facing allegations of looting millions of dollars in COVID-19 funds.
“Courts exist to deliver justice and fair hearings, and not to be abused as an instrument of political persecution against those who legitimately criticize corrupt political elites. The nation should remember that the architect who facilitated the looting of millions of dollars for COVID-19 funds Obadiah Moyo, got unopposed bail and is at home whilst I am jailed for opposing bad governance,” wrote Chin’ono.
He said he had been denied bail on the basis of frivolous ground however, he respects the court’s determination.
“The State said I was a flight risk, adding that I would abscond, yet the High Court gave me my passport in December and I spent 2 weeks out of Zimbabwe and came back home to Zimbabwe in 2021. I have been denied bail on the basis of a frivolous grounds. I respect a court’s right to make a determination on the basis of facts.” he said
Chin’ono urged President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government to focus on saving lives from the Covid-19 pandemic than to use repressive tactics to silence him.
“Mnangagwa’s government should be focused on saving lives from Covid-19 as the country staggers along with a health system in total shambles. Unfortunately ED’s government is using the most embarrassing repressive tactics to muzzle my voice from exposing looting of state funds and explaining the direct consequences of state corruption.” Chin’ono said.
Chin’ono, who has been arrested three times in six months has become a leading voice in the fight against corruption in the country.