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“There Is No Justification For Killing Civilians”

Constitutional Law expert, Alex Magaisa says the state must be held accountable for the killing of two civilians who were accused of fatally shooting one member of the Zimbabwe National Army (ZNA) while injuring the other on Saturday’s Chivhu shooting.

The two unidentified men were yesterday apprehended and killed by a team of army and police officers at their hideout, 16 kilometres outside of the Chivhu.

According to official reports from the police, the two are said to have exchanged fire with the security forces resulting in them being fatally shot but in the process, they critically injured another ZNA  member, who has since been transferred to a Harare hospital.

“The suspects were then shot and seriously injured. They were taken to Chivhu Hospital where they were pronounced dead on arrival,” said Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi, ZRP national spokesperson.

There has been a lot widespread praising for the manner the army handled the case but Magaisa believes the state must be held accountable for the death of the two.

“Seeing otherwise well-meaning people justifying State killings in the face of half-baked and inconsistent stories is disappointing. It makes one wonder whether we do not deserve this lot. As a rule, whenever the State kills it must be subjected to scrutiny and healthy scepticism

“In a news clip, the police spokesman said the Chivhu murder suspects were shot injured in a gun battle and were taken to hospital where they died. But some images suggest that the two chaps were already dead in the bush. It’s these inconsistencies that generate scepticism,” Magaisa said.

Government spokesperson, Nick Mangwana Monday labelled the assailants “guerrillas”

“So the insurgents who had taken cover in the bush acting like some wannabe guerrillas were supposed to be invited to areas of civilians first so “there could be witnesses”? Imiwee, what kind of world do some people live in? How ludicrous can one be?” he said.

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