Legal and Parliamentary Affiars

High Court upholds rights of children

Scale of justice

Justice Joseph Mafusire handed down his written judgment for the original #SafeSchools case, the Amalgamated Rural Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe (ARTUZ) v ZANU PF & Minister of Education HC 263/18. It is a bold judgment upholding the rights of children, teachers and schools. Here are some quotations from the judgment:

“I was satisfied that the respondents [ZANU PF and Minister of Education] were guilty of blatant abuse of the rights and freedoms of the school children; their schools and their teachers” [para 34]

“The High Court is the upper guardian of all¬† minor children in Zimbabwe. No one tramples on their rights and freedoms and expects the court to look the other way. It will not. … Section 81(2) of the Constitution says a child’s best interests are paramount in every matter concerning the child.” [para 37]

“The deponent to the first respondent’s [ZANU PF’s] affidavit [argued that] the first respondent, under the new dispensation, is now, as it were, a new creature. I did not agree. Evidence placed before me showed that the first respondent was still the same old creature and still perpetrating the same old abuses.” [para 38]

About the author

Byron Adonis Mutingwende