By Kumbirai Mafunda
High Court Judge Justice Nicholas Mathonsi will on Thursday 06 June 2019 hear an urgent chamber application filed by the family of a Mutare man seeking an order to compel Zimbabwean authorities to conduct a post-mortem examination on the body of their deceased relative who was shot dead by a former police officer, so as to determine the cause of his death.
Justice Mathonsi will hear the urgent chamber application at 2:30 PM after the Masendeke family represented by Richard Masendeke, an uncle to the late Terence Masendeke filed an urgent chamber application on Monday 3 June 2019 seeking an order compelling the state to urgently carry out a post mortem within 48 hours of the granting of the court order and in the alternative for an independent forensic pathologist to be granted authority to urgently carry out a post-mortem on the body of Terrence, a 24 year-old man, who was shot dead on 15 May 2019 by Dulula Chinamano, a retired police officer, who now works as a security guard in Chiadzwa, Manicaland province.
In the application filed by Fiona Iliff of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, the Masendeke family stated that they had been denied access to Terrence’s body and were advised that the post-mortem cannot be conducted until at least on 25 June 2019 due to the unavailability of pathologists at Mutare General Hospital.
The Masendeke family has cited Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage Minister Cain Mathema, Zimbabwe Republic Police Commissioner-General Godwin Matanga, Member In Charge of ZRP Marange Police Station, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health and Child Care and Clinical Director at Mutare General Hospital as respondents.
Iliff argued that Terence’s body is decomposing such that a post-mortem will soon become futile as the cause of death will become difficult to determine.
Iliff said the Masendeke family including Terence’s wife are mourning for the loss of their family member and are eager to bury him and ensure that justice is done.
In addition, Iliff charged that the Masendeke family is currently incurring huge expenses in providing for relatives and family members who wish to bury their relative and return to their residences hence the post-mortem needs to be carried out urgently.