Makunura v Minister of Home Affairs & 3 Ors (HH-113-17)

ANDREW MAKUNURA

versus

MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS N.O.

 and

COMMISSIONER GENERAL OF POLICE

and

AGRIPPA CHINYAMA N.O

and

ATTORNEY-GENERAL N.O.

14 & 15 November 2016 & 22 February 2017

MUREMBA J

Civil Trial

T Bhatasara, for the plaintiff

E Mukucha, for the defendants

MUREMBA J: On 12 February 2015 the plaintiff who was driving a private car was stopped at a roadblock along High Glen Road, Harare by the third defendant who is a police officer under the employ of the first and second defendants. The third defendant asked to see the plaintiffs driver’s licence which the plaintiff produced. There is a dispute as to whether or not the third defendant then returned the plaintiffs driver’s licence and it is this dispute that I am supposed to resolve. However, it is not disputed that the third defendant went on to inspect the plaintiffs motor vehicle and discovered that the plaintiff had no radio listener’s licence. The third defendant asked the plaintiff to pay a spot fine of USS10-00, but the plaintiff said that he had no money. What transpired thereafter is disputed between the plaintiff and the third defendant. However, it is common cause that the plaintiff did not pay the spot fine.

It is the plaintiffs averment that when he failed to pay the spot fine the third defendant confiscated his driver’s licence and advised him to collect his driver’s licence at Southerton Police Station upon payment of the fine on the same day at lunch time. The plaintiff avers that when he made a follow up on his licence the police denied ever taking his driver’s licence. It is on this basis that the plaintiff issued summons making the following claim against the defendants.

“(1) A Constitutional declaration that 1st - 3rd defendants’ demand for a spot fine from

the plaintiff abrogates ss 49; 66; 69 (1) and (3); 86 (3) (e) and 71 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe.

- The 1st to 3rd defendants are ordered to forthwith cease the practice of detaining motorists, confiscating their licences, impounding their motor vehicles or any other conduct that would compel a motorist to pay fine on the spot against their will.

- An order for the return by the defendants of plaintiffs metal driver’s licence.

- Costs of suit.”

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2017