Zimbabwe Vice President Mphoko Says Not Even the Police Can Arrest Jonathan Moyo Without Mugabe’s Authority
By Sechaba Lunkunku
Oct. 10, 2016 (All Africa Global Media) — ACTING President Phelekezela Mphoko Sunday said the attempt to arrest Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education, Professor Jonathan Moyo last week, was “tantamount to undermining the authority of the president” as no one including the police had the right to arrest a cabinet minister without permission from President Robert Mugabe.
Mphoko said the Zimbabwe Anti-corruption Commission (ZAC) “maliciously” sought to arrest Moyo even when it had no powers to arrest a cabinet minister without authorisation from Mugabe.
He said: “There is this topical issue involving the commission which wanted to arrest minister Moyo. The law of this country says the commission has no mandate or power to arrest a cabinet minister appointed by the President and even police or whoever is required to get clearance from the president to do so. The president is the only person who can sanction an arrest as the appointing authority.”
“If you want to arrest a senior government official such as the principal director or Permanent Secretary, you need to approach the chief principal to the president and cabinet, but whenever the police want to arrest a cabinet minister, they should first seek permission to do so from the president. What happened is clear malice by people who want to do things the illegal way,” Mphoko said.
He went on, “What happened is undermining the president. Surely when the president is busy addressing a Politburo meeting and the anti-corruption commission is busy outside plotting to arrest Moyo thereafter. This is like munity in the country.”
Mphoko’s comments come after ZAC members together with the police sought to arrest Moyo soon after the end of the Politburo which was chaired by Mugabe last Wednesday.
According to ZAC, they want to interview Moyo on the allegations of embezzlement of about $430 000 of Zimbabwe Manpower Development Fund (Zimdef) allegedly by the professor and his colleagues at the ministry. Moyo reportedly told Mugabe that he had used the money to purchase bicycles for the chiefs and to finance Zanu PF activities.
But Mphoko said Moyo was being persecuted for supporting President Mugabe.
He said: “His (Moyo) only crime is that he supports the president and those who want to have him arrested are people who do not support the president because the one million man march is a Zanu PF initiative and the 21st February Movement is a legacy of the president. So why do you arrest such a person?”
The acting president further castigated the attempt to arrest Moyo in parliament saying it was “mischievous” to do so because MPs have parliamentary immunity. Mphoko said government was “hunting for the person behind” the attempt to arrest Moyo.
Since the failed arrest last week, Moyo has taken to the social media attacking “Gukurahundi politicians, tribalists and cross border diamond thieves” in rants seen as directed at Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
Moyo has said there were many corrupt ministers and Zanu PF officials who were not being arrested.
Copyright New Zimbabwe.