Home » Judicial » High Court Allows Kereke Rape Prosecution

CONTROVERSIAL politician and businessman, Munyaradzi Kereke’s continued bid to dodge prosecution on rape charges was ended Wednesday when the High Court granted the complainant’s request to have the matter tried without the State prosecutor.

The Bikita West MP is accused of raping a then 11-year-old girl at his home in Harare’s low density Vainona suburb October 2009.

Despite the matter having been reported at Highlands Police, Prosecutor General Johannes Tomana has been refusing to bring the influential politician to trial, raising suspicions of g political interference in the matter.

Tomana cited lake of incriminating evidence in the protracted matter.

This left the complainant, through her guardian Francis Maramwidze, to pursue the less common private prosecution route, which allows a complainant or a representative to prosecute the case in the absence of an agent from the Prosecutor General’s office.

Through family lawyer Charles Hwarara, Maramwidze argued that Tomana was infringing on the complainant’s constitutional rights to justice.

However, Justice November Mutshiya only gave the operative parts of his judgement and did not immediately give the reasons which led to his granting of the complainant’s request.

Hwarara said the applicants were relieved by the court outcome.

“It is a big relief to the complainant’s guardian who is quite relieved to see that some form of justice is probably going to be done now,” Hwarara said.

“We basically have to have it set down in the court and we anticipate that that will probably happen sooner rather than later but we will also take into consideration that the minor is at school for now.”

Wednesday’s ruling means Tomana will now be compelled to surrender the rape docket to the complainant who will then take over prosecution.

Private prosecution, although rarely used in Zimbabwe, is an accepted although costly method of prosecution which allows the complainant to engage private lawyers to handle the prosecution.

Law experts say anybody can still do private prosecution although it would need someone with good understanding of prosecution such as a police officer, lawyer or former magistrate.

Hwarara said he had not yet been instructed by his clients as to who they preferred to prosecute against Kereke.

Kereke, a larger than life character, denies the rape allegations which he says are the works of his enemies, chief among them former central bank governor Gideon Gono, whose beef with his former aisor is well documented.

Since the two fell out when Gono dislodged the tycoon from the RBZ corridors, Kereke has been waging a bitter war against his former boss.

Kereke has gone to the extent of petitioning the State to prosecute Gono for allegedly embezzling millions of state funds and gold when he was still at the helm of the supreme bank.

While he was busy seeking Gono’s prosecution, Kereke found himself occupied with his own defence in a rape matter that had, over the years, seemingly taken a lull.

Source : New Zimbabwe