Media lawyer Sithole files urgent chamber application

Media lawyer Sithole files urgent chamber application

Nqobani Sithole has filed an urgent chamber application before the High Court of Bulawayo on the 31st of July 2020 around 15:00hrs for a habeas corpus of Tawanda Muchehiwa. He filed the application representing MISA Zimbabwe.

Tawanda Muchehiwa’s whereabouts are unknown following his arrest by the Police in Mahatshula Suburb in Bulawayo on the 30th of July 2020. The police that arrested him are professing ignorance as to his whereabouts hence this application before the court.

Muchehiwa is nephew to ZimLive Editor Mduduzi Mathuthu whose home was ransacked by police on the same evening of the 30th of July 2020 and his sister was also detained in the process. Other relatives of Mathuthu that were arrested with Muchehiwa are Amandlenkosi Mathuthu and Advent Mathuthu whose whereabouts are now known.

The 1st and 2nd respondents in the matter are Officer In Charge of CID Law and Order Section Bulawayo and the Officer Commanding Police Bulawayo Province respectively.

The applicant contends that Muchehiwa was last seen in the custody of the police at Bulawayo Central Police Station after he was separated from his two aforementioned relatives upon arrival at the station. Sithole indicated that Muchehiwa’s right to liberty, protection and benefit of the law is being violated and in order to stop the police from continuing with that violation the effective remedy is a habeas corpus.

A habeas corpus is an order that seeks to have a detainee who has disappeared under the custody of the police be brought before the court and released unless lawful grounds exist for his continued detention.

The matter has been set down for today, August 1, 2020, at 10:00hrs before Justice Makonese.

About MISA

The Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA) was founded in 1996. Its work focuses on promoting, and advocating for, the unhindered enjoyment of freedom of expression, access to information and a free, independent, diverse and pluralistic media.