Zimbabwe Soldiers Found Guilty Of Shooting A Civilian
23 May 2024
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By A Correspondent| The Zimbabwe National Army (ZNA) has been held accountable for the shooting of a civilian during the 2019 protests over fuel price hikes, leading to a successful lawsuit against the Defence Ministry.

Felix Mafondokoto, a resident of Chitungwiza, was awarded US$29,182 in compensation after being shot in the backside during the military’s crackdown on the protests. Mafondokoto, represented by Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, filed a lawsuit against the Defence Minister and the army commander, seeking compensation for pain and suffering, medical expenses, and loss of earnings.

Court documents reveal that Mafondokoto was accompanying a friend when soldiers indiscriminately attacked civilians, resulting in a soldier accidentally discharging a firearm and shooting Mafondokoto. Although the army denied being deployed on the day of the incident, the court ruled in Mafondokoto’s favor, holding the defendants vicariously liable for the negligent conduct of their officer.

The magistrate concluded that Mafondokoto suffered permanent injuries, including ongoing pain and a limited ability to work. Consequently, he was awarded compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, contumelia, and loss of earnings, totaling US$29,182.