PUBLIC STATEMENT FOR AND ON BEHALF OF DELIWE CHIPO MUTANDIRO
& DEBRA FUNGAI MUTANDIRO (OUR CLIENTS)
We were instructed to issue this brief public statement by our above named clients, Deliwe & Debra Mutandiro so as to set the record straight.
This is however not a response to each and every false allegation that has been said
against them. Such is not necessary at this instance.
Our clients have noted with great concern and sadness, the various false, one sided,
inaccurate stories/allegations circulating on social media and in the mainstream print
and electronic media; wherein they have been wrongly and falsely accused of committing a heinous crime of murder and many other distasteful acts.
Some even went as far as falsely reporting that our clients had been arrested, charged with
murder and were expected to appear at court earlier today.
It was never our client’s intention to issue this public statement during their grieving
but they found themselves compelled to do so in light of the above, deliberate
disinformation and false narrative which is being advanced through social media.
We are instructed to briefly set the record straight as follows;
1. Our clients were never arrested, detained or charged with murder or any other offense. They never committed any offense in the various manners alleged or at all. The police have never treated them or any other person as accused persons as yet but were only invited for interviewing as part of due process.
2. The police swiftly and diligently attended to the scene after they were informed about the death of the now deceased on Saturday morning, 25th of June 2022.
3. Due to the circumstances surrounding the death, the police had to and indeed
opened a SUDDEN DEATH DOCKET in anticipation of subsequent Inquest
Hearing Proceedings. Due process had to be followed. Procedurally, our clients and other people were consequently invited to the police station; first for interviewing since they were some of the people who were with, at the
residential property (14 in total on the night in question) and had interacted with the now deceased in the few hours preceding his sad demise. They had to tell the police what they knew to have happened in a bid to unravel the
mystery surrounding the death of Deliwe’s husband. Our clients have been going to the police (Rhodesville Police Station and CID Homicide – Harare Central) and fully cooperating with the law enforcement agencies since Saturday the 25th of June 2022 to date. For the record they are not the only
ones who have been participating in these processes, some neighbours, residents at the same property, relatives and friends were also called and interviewed by the police.
4. Our clients together with other people were subsequently recorded statements yesterday, Monday 27th of June 2022 at CID Homicide – Harare Central.
5. Earlier today (Tuesday 28th of June 2022) our clients together with other relatives went to Parirenyatwa Hospital where a post-mortem by a suitably qualified practitioner was conducted to ascertain the possible cause of the now deceased’s death.
6. Our clients, ourselves and the now deceased’s other relatives were later
invited back to the police (CID Homicide) and the ‘findings’ of the postmortem were communicated to us pending the availing of the formal result by the doctor who conducted same.
7. The police were extremely helpful to all parties.
They went out of their way and explained the meaning of the mentioned possible cause of death as was stated to them by the doctor who conducted the post-mortem such that everyone left the police station with a clear appreciation of the situation at hand.
We believe the police will at the appropriate time communicate to the public the possible cause of death (according to the post-mortem) since this case has attracted widespread national intrest and unusual speculation on
various social media platforms.
8. The police will communicate to us and the general public any further developments as they continue with their investigations.
9. In the meantime, we are instructed to humbly plead with especially members
of the general public (including some social media influencers) to desist from writing or sharing false, unsubstantiated accusations against our clients as this is insensitive, irresponsible, may amount to defamation, a violation of our laws and an infringement on our client’s rights.
We implore everyone who uses social media to act responsibly, without malice and to be patient with the investigations process. Let us all allow due process to be followed as
police have been diligently interrogating all accusations, possibilities so as to
exclude others to get to the bottom of what could have happened in casu.
Never jump into premature conclusions and do not take everything you read on social media as the gospel truth.
10.We have, in the interim, advised our clients not to comment on the various allegations against them appearing on social media notwithstanding the fact that the court of public opinion seems to have already convicted them pending finalisation of investigations.
11.Last but not least, our clients greatly appreciate the heartfelt condolence messages and support from some of you (friends and relatives included) during these very difficult times. They now wish to focus on grieving Deliwe’s husband.
Kindly afford them the space to grieve and not be insensitive nor needlessly inhuman.
D.MTHOMBENI (Legal Counsel)
For & on behalf of Deliwe and Debra Mutandiro