According to the Diplomatic Immunities and Privileges Act, Ms Mugabe cannot invoke diplomatic immunity. She is not here in an official capacity and the immunity extended to Heads of State is not applicable to a first lady. Ms Mugabe should have applied for diplomatic immunity before she came to our country, not after she finds herself facing criminal charges. (DA)
ON GRACE MUGABE
The Ministry of Police wishes to make the following update on the matter as reported:
The suspect in the matter made arrangements acceptable to SAPS that she would present herself to SAPS Police Station in Sandton yesterday, 15 August 2017 at 10H00. The time scheduled was changed several times. By end of business yesterday she had failed to present herself as arranged.
Her attorneys and government of Zimbabwe representatives did arrive at the Police Station in Sandton for channels of cooperation.
The purpose of the arrangement was to obtain a warning statement, obtain the suspects version if any and present the docket to NPA for a decision whether to prosecute or not.
The suspect lawyers and her government representatives made verbal representations to SAPS investigators that the suspect wished to invoke diplomatic immunity cover and thus she elected to change her mind about the warning statement.
Subsequently, the Government of Zimbabwe has dispatched a diplomatic note verbale to the Department of International Relations and Cooperation invoking said Diplomatic Immunity cover.
The suspect remains in South Africa and has not departed the Republic, we are advised her itenerary includes amongst private matters her attendance and participation at the scheduled SADC Heads of States/Governments Summit and Bi-lateral Diplomatic Meetings already underway in Pretoria.
Discussions with the suspect’s lawyers and the Zimbabwean High Commission representatives are taking place to make sure that the suspects is processed through the legal system.
Issued by the Ministry of Police, 16 August 2017
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe has reportedly said that all locals accused of killing white former commercial farmers during the country’s controversial reform programme are immune to prosecution.
According to News Day, Mugabe said this while addressing thousands who thronged the National Heroes Acre to mark this year’s Heroes Day.
“Yes, we have those (white farmers) who were killed when they resisted. We will never prosecute those who killed them. I ask: Why we should arrest them?,” Mugabe was quoted as saying.
The report said that at least 12 white commercial farmers were killed by suspected Zanu-PF activists during the fast-tracked agrarian reforms that were masterminded by Mugabe’s administration in 2000.
Thousands of white commercial farmers and their employees were also displaced and left without sources of income
According to the Zimbabwe Commercial Farmers Union, more than 4000 white farmers were affected by the often violent farm invasions.
‘No judicial decision will stand in the way’
Some of the white farmers that were kicked out of their properties during the agrarian reforms have now set base in neighbouring countries such as Malawi, Mozambique and Zambia.
Mugabe was quoted, at the time as saying: “No judicial decision will stand in the way we have adopted to acquire the land. After all, the land is ours by birth. It’s ours by rights. It’s ours also by struggle,” News Day said.
Mugabe made headlines in July when he said that white commercial farmers who still remained on the farms should be removed from their properties because most Zimbabweans were in need of land.
The nonagenarian said this while addressing thousands of his ruling Zanu-PF party supporters in the farming town of Marondera, about 80km east of the capital Harare.
“We told (former British premier) Tony Blair to keep his England and we keep our Zimbabwe because land is our heritage. We have discovered that in Mashonaland east province alone, there are 73 white commercial farmers who are still occupying some farms when our people do not have land,” Mugabe was quoted as saying at the time.