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Macabre spectacle as frail Mubaiwa is put on trial


Ill judge delays Marry Mubaiwa’s passport ruling



VICE-PRESIDENT Constantino Chiwenga’s ex-wife Marry Mubaiwa is likely to wait a lot longer for her appeal to be heard after it emerged the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) assigned her case to a sick judge who has been bedridden for weeks in what observers say is a deliberate ploy to delay finalising the matter.


 Mubaiwa has been unwell since the 2018 bombing at White City Stadium in Bulawayo at the height of massive campaigns ahead of the 31 July general elections and has not recovered since then. The former top model has gone through a tough time, forced to travel to court by ambulance and often stretchered into the courtroom writhing in pain.

She is facing attempted murder charges for allegedly trying to kill Chiwenga while he was bed – ridden in a South African hospital. Mubaiwa is also facing money laundering charges. Mubaiwa’s lawyers filed an application for the release of her passport on 11 August to allow her to travel outside the country on medical grounds, particularly to seek a second specialist opinion on the need to amputate her hand.

High Court judge Owen Tagu was scheduled to hear the application for the release of Mubaiwa’s passport, but the motion court was postponed for one week after he is said to have failed to make it. He is said to have heard the urgent application on 18 August, but reserved judgment before he was hospitalised on 20 August.

 It could not be immediately established whether he has since been discharged, but Mubaiwa’s application remains undetermined. Responding to a letter from Mubaiwa’s lawyer Beatrice Mtetwa, Judge President Mary Zimba-Dube said the lawyers’ concerns on the matter have been heard and the issue was now in the hands of Justices Tagu.

“We acknowledge receipt of your letter dated 31 August, 2022. Your concerns have been noted. Please be advised that Honourable Tagu J has been engaged. He advises that he is working on the matter,” the letter dated 1 September 2022 reads.

 Mubaiwa was diagnosed with a severe chronic syndrome, with a medical report by specialist trauma and orthopaedic surgeon John Nyahunzvi suggesting the need for emergent right highabove-elbow amputation as soon as she is deemed medically stable.

But despite the need for emergency medical at tention and surgery, the family said there is little they could do for her to travel out of the country since the courts were refusing to release her passport.

 Insiders said Justice Tagu remains assigned to critical matters, including the issue of sacked judge Erica Ndewere. Observers said the JSC is not being considerate to the litigants whose cases remain delayed and to the judges whose right to fair working conditions and the right to health are infringed.

Repeated efforts to contact JSC secretary Wal – ter Chikwana were fruitless as calls to his phone went unanswered. Judge President Zimba-Dube was also not immediately available for comment.

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