Zim court orders SSB to garnish cop’s salary to compensate tortured schoolboy

JUSTICE has finally caught up with a Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) officer who severely tortured a school boy in total disregard of the country’s anti-torture laws.

A Mutare Magistrate on Friday 10 March 2017 granted an application to garnish $100 per month from Constable Crispen Chikazhe in satisfaction of a judgment debt, which was granted against the police officer for his barbarism when he tortured Brighton Sanyanga, then a 19-year-old pupil at Pafiwa High School in Mutasa District in Manicaland province.

Sanyanga, who was an “A” level student at Pafiwa High School was tortured by Chikazhe who had invited him to attend at Nyanga police station to answer allegations of malicious damage to property which had happened at the school after a demonstration allegedly staged by students.

Chikazhe, in an effort to extract information from Sanyanga, tortured the student physically by exposing him to electrical shock and psychologically by threatening to kill him.

Sanyanga’s lawyer Peggy Tavagadza of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) intervened by suing Chikazhe on behalf of the student to ensure that the law enforcement agent paid for his cruel actions.

In 2014, after a full trial, the Mutare Magistrates Court awarded damages in the sum of $570 to Sanyanga, for torture, pain and suffering, medical expenses and transport costs.

But Chikazhe, who is stationed at Nyanga police station, had reneged on paying the judgment debt.

This prompted Tavagadza to file an application in the court on 24 January 2017 seeking an order to compel the Salary Services Bureau, which processes government employees’ salaries, to garnish $100 from the policeman’s salary monthly to offset the debt he owes Sanyanga.

Tavagadza argued that Chikazhe earns about $380 per month and after the execution of the order, he would be left with a sufficient balance of income to maintain himself and those people dependent upon him.

This is not the first time that ZLHR has been forced to intervene after police officers at Nyanga police station would have tortured villagers.

In one of the cases, two Nyanga Police Station based officers – only identified as Kapfunde and Kambanje – were ordered to pay $3 000 in damages for torturing hotel security guard Tsitsi Chimhutu when they were investigating a break-in at Montclair Hotel last year.

Chimhutu was tortured while the police officers were trying to induce a confession in a case of $2 500 which had gone missing.

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